Friday, June 18, 2010

Prairie Thunderstorm

You can see them coming, building, rising like a wall of air, long before they arrive. The open sky a backdrop for time.

Storms roll ponderously across the sky, darkening and lightening. Seem to move slowly only because still in the distance. Then suddenly on top of you, a flash and shudder, and all the waters of heaven blind you to the road. Now slow, now frighteningly quickened.

Storm season on the open prairie. The glacial-outwash utterly flat area just north of town, where the flood washed into a lake made by the terminal moraine to the south. So flat you can see forever. Low hills surround. The long view of heaven and earth. Dragons in the clouds, phoenix rising from lightning-struck groves.

Patches of heaven break through to the darkened lands. Promising. The air so clear now, wiped clean, you can feel it sparkle. Fresh grass smell, bruised flower smell. Little roadside buddhas sit and wait for refreshment.

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