Background: Today I received a text message from UTD telling me severe storms were battling their way through south Dallas Country. For one second, I thanked my lucky stars that I’d left Texas and avoided this mess, but in the next, fear began sucking at me, wheedling at me, worrying through me as I thought about my friends, my loved ones, all the beautiful people I cherish and trust and miss back home. Granted, I didn’t have to worry about my own, Lucas’s, or our cats’ safety, but there are so many others I love and hate to worry about in a swirl of devastation like that.
And then I also remembered: two days ago, I wrote a piece about a coming tornado, touching down and wreaking havoc on the Great Plains. I’ve pasted it below. I had placed it on my FB page, but hidden it the same day because it seemed over-dramatic, and now, it seems real, too real. So here it is:
Fragment, a storm
There’s a wall of black moving in, a storm. The clouds roll down until they touch the rippling fields, the bowed trees, the sagging ply-wood houses. Nothing can escape this.
Nothing can stop the inevitable wreckage to follow, the flapping curtains that breathed lilac and honey, now soggy and buried in a swirl of burnt, creosote-soaked two-by-fours. Shreds of pink insulation float like cotton candy in the air, buoyed on by the wafting stench of sewage, unburied and unmoored and seeking its own shelter, always.
The last offering soaked into the earth, the rain and the lightning and thunder skitter down, precursors to the party, the whirl of world in the clouds, the breaking sweat that finally pours into a funnel, finally pours into our reckoning.
The plains and the petrichor and the last ones left to witness how the wind does move, how it takes everything up for itself, sweeping and sweeping and sweeping until all we have left–all we ever have left–is gone. Is clean.
(1 April 2012)