After the Storm (A Six-Sentence Story)

storm~Image Source~

My mother was terrified of tornadoes; my sisters and I spent many stormy summer nights huddled with her under the laundry table in our basement as my father, refusing to be stirred, slept soundly in his bed.

She told a story of seeing the devastation left in a tornado’s wake as a young child on the South Dakota prairie.  A big farmhouse down the road from theirs had one wall completely missing, as if it had been neatly sliced off with a butcher’s knife, furniture still in place on the opposite side of the open rooms, curtains still hanging in the windows.

I never thought to ask about the family who lived there, but now I can envision them, probably hunkered down in the root cellar hoping that the old wooden door would hold, hearing the roar like a freight rain above them and praying for their lives.

Imagine the terror of a little girl huddled there in the darkness with her brother and her parents in the deafening noise of the wind, things being torn apart, and debris being hurled against the cellar door.

An eerie silence follows, and they slowly climb the stairs and push aside the door to find an alien landscape – trees uprooted, barn flattened, smashed truck that had apparently been picked up and dropped beside what remained of the smokehouse, and their big two-story farmhouse sitting there with one side wide open like a dollhouse; nothing would ever be the same.


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Author: Josie Two Shoes

I've been blogging off and on since August of 2006. I adopted the pen name Josie Two Shoes in 2007 as I began a new chapter of my life standing on my own two feet. Now I'm married to the man of my dreams; we live in dusty West Texas with a house full of furkids. I am an Aquarian by birth, and although I am past sixty and slightly frayed around the edges, my fascination with this thing called life continues. Faith, family, and friends are important to me; so are honesty, trust, tolerance, compassion and kindness. I'm pretty up front about most things, so if you want to know something more about me, just ask! :-) You can also reach me by email and find me at my Facebook page.

10 thoughts on “After the Storm (A Six-Sentence Story)”

  1. The memoir was riveting. I had to reread the sentences to find the cue. I’ve never experienced a tornado, or anything like it, except maybe Hurricane Sandy, which came at night and left devastation which is still being rebuilt. Some never can.

  2. Have lived with hurricanes my whole life. Incredibly powerful storms, nothing to take lightly, but they can’t hold a candle to the intimidating quality of tornados. Maybe because they’re so singular or even personal. Would not want to encounter one.

  3. I’ve only seen one tornado. And that’s enough! Lots of hurricanes. You did a really nice job of description with this. I especially like the dollhouse description.

  4. We very rarely have a tornado in this state, but there was one that touched down about eight years ago and went right down the main street of a small town not too far away and destroyed a few buildings. Unlike the midwest where people have storm cellars (or used to) people are not prepared for such things here.
    It would be so frightening to be in the midst of a tornado with objects flying around and people having to hold on for their lives.
    Great photo to share with your SSS!

  5. I find tornadoes to be unbelievably scary. And that’s only from seeing pictures of them and the devastation they’re capable of causing. I can’t even begin to imagine what your mom must have felt. Your re-telling is chillingly descriptive.

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