Well, it's spring in Missouri and with that come the storms. I love thunderstorms. The foreboding dark clouds rolling in. The wind kicking up and rustling the leaves in the trees. The cooler air blowing in with the smell of rain. Distant thunder getting ever closer. Suddenly....crackle..Crackle..KABOOM!! As if on cue the rain begins pouring down. Ahhh......so exciting and exhilarating. The best ending to a wonderful thunderstorm is for the clouds to break apart revealing deep blue sky and sunshine splashes down sparkling on the newly washed grass and trees.
One of the most memorable storms in my life happened about 9 years ago. I lived in a cute little house in South Saint Louis City and severe weather warnings were out. The sky was getting darker and darker and tornado warnings were issued. I wasn't paying too much attention but when I glanced out the window I saw something that was so strange that I rushed outside to take a closer look.
The daylight had that eerie greenish yellow color. I'm not sure what causes this but it usually means things are going to get ugly. What caught my attention were the clouds. They were like none I have ever seen before. The strangest sculpted, rolling shapes and the lower clouds were blowing one direction while the higher clouds blew the opposite way. Does this happen often?! It was the first time I had noticed it.
Advancing toward me in the sky was what had brought me outside. It was a wall of black cloud so menacing that my heart started pounding. It was a straight line across the sky and tall like a floating dark cliff. I noticed others were standing outside watching it too. As I stood there on my front step I looked up and straight above my head, the clouds were swirling around in a circle. I shouted and pointed up and the neighbors all gasped and started chattering. Yikes!
Suddenly lightning struck close by with a thunderclap so sudden and deafening that it left my nerves ragged and my ears ringing.
Right before me, like a stone dropped from the sky, fell a Swallow. The rain was coming down in torrents and I dashed out to the street and scooped up the lifeless little body. She was so pretty. I'd never seen a Swallow up so close. I took her up onto the porch and gently laid her down. I thought I would bury the poor creature after the storm blew over. I watched the storm for a little while and when it began to die down I turned to the little bird and held her in my hand. What had caused her to drop from the sky? Was it the loud bang of the thunder? As I pondered this, she opened her eyes and stirred. She was still alive! She righted herself and stood in my hands for a moment then flew away. It was magical and I'll always remember that moment. It was as if she had come back to life. Reborn.
Now, I don't remember if the clouds parted and the sun came out that day but wouldn't that have been the perfect ending?