March 26, 2023- The scattered piles of cottonwood, ash and Gambel’s oak that greet the visitor to the area just north of the Agua Fria River bear testimony to the force of last week’s floods. Driftwood has long been seen as both a bounty-for those who rely on wood to heat their homes and cook their food and a bane, for the effects of deforestation on further soil erosion and both air and water pollution.

We can see analogies to other elements of life, in the presence of driftwood. Those of no fixed address are sometimes likened to these branches, logs and stumps. Their value to society consists of their accumulated knowledge and experience, to their compassion for others that is borne of their own pain and struggle. There is a similar view taken of the disabled, for much the same reason-and yet, many severely impaired people shower their families and caregivers with love-which some of those family members and caregivers may not get elsewhere.

Simply put, every element of creation has a benefit-and many have several. Everyone who has given me fits, for example, has imparted a lesson. In some cases, their presence in my life needed to be curtailed, but the lessons I drew from having encountered them was hardly diminished by the difficulties they brought to my life, however temporary those were. Likewise, the lessons of the Flood of Spring, 2023 were not diminished by the suffering it has wrought on those who have lived in the areas close to the banks of rivers and creeks whose depredations are intermittent and seasonal.

Here is what I found on a last-minute visit to Badger Springs, southeast of Prescott, early this evening.

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