Climbing the stairs to the second floor, which had been spared, we found that the things we had abandoned had become artifacts. We’d left behind our battered notebooks, our sweet-smelling erasers, our passed notes with their secrets folded within, sure they’d remain there for us, waiting. They lay still and preserved inside our desks, but they were no longer ours. We realized, when you touch a textbook or an orange, when you watch heavy curtains shoved away from windows with wind, dancing in air, when you fall asleep against your desk and dream it’s the deck of an old ship, shifting in the sea, you enliven these things, you transfer your energy to them, you give them meaning. The fantasy you had as a child that your toys came alive after you left them alone was wrong; it’s just the opposite.