Josh warmed his hands by the fire. The smoke was keeping the mosquitos at bay as the sun fell behind the ash trees that lined the back fence.
He scrunched the top most page and threw it in. It burst into bright orange and licked the dusk light.
Josh held the next by the corner and dangled it above the flames. It singed, turning an earthy brown before becoming as dark as night. And then it caught alight. He watched the flames dance towards his hand until the heat got too much.
He repeated this, and as the sketches hung, he looked at each, ashamed that he’d been so naïve in his line work. It was childish in the way he tried to draw the still life.
His drawings now capture the essence of his subject, which isn’t always apparent in the way something looks. Certainly not the way it looks at a casual glance.
Josh’s mother came rushing down the back steps, screaming for him to stop. “Are you mad?” she asked.
She attempted to grab the remaining sketches, but he was too quick. The thick wad of papers nearly suffocated the fire. One small flayed corner caught alight, which then allowed the pile to thin out in fingers of flames.