|Roadside shrine for Maribel Ramos. Santiago Canyon Road.|
Here is where the sidewalks run out and here is where the fences fall down and here is where people come to hike the hills and others come to dump what they don’t want: weary couches, broken furniture, busted appliances, sad mattresses flung face down and then, two weeks ago, in early May, a body of a woman, near the creek bed they say, where stands of matilija poppies bloom white and yellow and the sage has gone purple and the big oaks wear their spring green. They found her last Thursday. She was someone's daughter, sister, student, friend. The road was closed for hours while they retrieved her.
We’d been driving by her all that time.
This week, the ash from last week's flares still smear the road at Jackson Ranch and Modjeska.
A shrine has appeared.