The fire of Randolph Goings

The story of a former slave's challenges contrasts against the burned prairie at a cemetery site.



April 20, 2020 - 10:06 AM

Photo by Trevor Hoag / Iola Register

I stood transfixed behind the barbed-wire fence by the side of the gravel road, watching in awe as bright orange fire snaked across the pasture in Liberty Township.

The air was heavy with dancing smoke that turned the air a hazy blue and obscured my view into the distance where a single tree with gnarled black branches stood.

An April wind suddenly began to churn in the southwest, such that what had been a controlled burn began to surge hungrily in my direction.

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