Springtime on the Plains

>> 5.01.2010

Each spring we put away our winter
woolens, unearth our cottons and shorts,
begin the time-honored tradition
of sky-watching; a regional past-time,

searching the skies for approaching
grey and black clouds, towering
anvils above the grassy seas
flowing across the plains;

listening for the bulletins blaring
“seek shelter NOW”, hoping, praying
the National Weather Service is wrong,
this time, please, God, let them be wrong;

imploring the deity that the fifteen
minute advance notice is enough,
that you don’t hear that freight-train roar,
nor gaze into the eye of the abyss;

that time elapses and the tornado
skips your house, that those icy fingers
of fear are not a premonition of what’s
to come, that the ‘all-clear’ is heard soon;

that your friends and loved-ones are safe,
and you tell yourself, over and over
that it will never happen to you . . .
until it does.


(NOTE:  Although I've lived in Oklahoma for the majority of my life, I have never suffered the loss of a loved one or even property to a tornado - I've been very fortunate in that respect.  I remember many times in my childhood that someone would tuck me into a closet or bathtub covered with blankets and pillows to wait out a storm.  There's nothing you can do but shelter, wait, and pray.)

3 comments:

Greg Bonagura 5/1/10, 11:43 PM  

I have felt this kind of fear before and am grateful to have overcome it, just as you have.

SJ 5/2/10, 6:29 AM  

a very nice call to spring

Christina Strigas 5/3/10, 11:12 AM  

Lovely.

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