Bad memories and tornados – NaPoWriMo Day22

We’re pretty tired of big storms this spring. We’ve had a number of hail storms, and a tornado hit the airport area tonight – no one killed, but a loaded plane was lifted off the ground and the passengers couldn’t get off because of debris strewn around. People are stuck on major highways shut down due to debris, downed power lines, and tipped over semi-trucks. While my part of town escaped with minimal rain, I remembered a couple very deadly tornados from my past that I had put out of my mind. I remembered the gripping fear, one that lasted for years with every storm that came by. It is common to find your brain has hidden away details of unpleasant memories, but all it takes it a related incident to trigger them. Then you decide whether you’re brave enough to pull the details out of the drawer and lay them on paper.

In Remembrance:
Huntsville, Alabama, November 15, 1989 (21 dead, 263 injured)
Plainfield, Illinois, August 28, 1990 (29 dead, 353 injured)

I don’t want to remember

The times when the wind
Ripped leaves from trees
And skies swirled green-black.
I don’t want to remember
The voice shouting over the radio,
“It’s a tornado, it’s a tornado!”
My heart turning to ice.
I don’t want to remember

Stories of black wall clouds,
Fields of dead cows, cars in trees,
People crushed at the dinner table.

I don’t want to remember
Being left alone in a big house
Not knowing what had happened,
While police sirens screamed
And the phone line was silent.

I don’t want to remember
Walking down the road
To find my old school destroyed
And teachers killed.

But I did remember,
And whenever thunder rolled
Over the mountain,
I had to pray that my heart
Would not stop.


About moonbridgebooks

Co-author of Cherry Blossoms in Twilight, a WWII Japan memoir of her mother's childhood; author of Poems That Come to Mind, for caregivers of dementia patients; Co-author/Editor of Battlefield Doc, a medic's memoir of combat duty during the Korean War; life writing enthusiast; loves history and culture (especially Japan), poetry, and cats
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2 Responses to Bad memories and tornados – NaPoWriMo Day22

  1. magical, vivid imagery in your beautiful and well fine tuned words.smiles.

  2. invite you sharing a free verse with poets rally today.… Hope to see you in!Have A Blessed Thursday!xxx

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