A tree stood alone in the field,
limbs twisted, gnarled, barren of life.

The sky cackled and spit,
flashing blue-white
as heavy black clouds hung close to the earth,
rumbling in vibrating baritones.

Inside the tree trunk
an ancient owl closed its eyes.
Seconds later—
laser quick, razor sharp—
lightning bolted,
cleanly splitting the tree in two.

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