Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thoughts & Prayers in the aftermath of Tornados

My thoughts and prayers go out to all those impacted by the recent bout of tornados sweeping through Texas and Oklahoma.  May God especially Bless and watch over the families who have lost loved ones to these storms.  May those who have lost homes find their way to healing and the resources they need in order to begin the process of re-building.

I saw on a friend's Facebook page this evening how a community is coming together to donate clothes, food and other essential items to storm victims in nearby towns via a school gym at a local elementary school.  Also saw postings for important items found in an effort to identify and reunite them with their rightful owners:  a high school sports letter jacket ... a camera with photographs of a new baby delivered in the hospital not long ago.  Kind of renews your faith in your fellow man to see such an outpouring of love and support.  God Bless one and ALL!

(A close match for my recollection of my father's painting and the image,
in my own mind, of the actual twister from my porch-side view)

Thankfully, thus far, my family and friends in Texas and friends in Oklahoma have survived these storms without any major damage.  I actually remember witnessing a tornado, firsthand and up-close, when I was 5 years old, living in Oklahoma.  To the best of my recollection the tornado I witnessed back then was huge, muddy-grey in color and spiraling madly in the not far-off distance from our home in Stillwater.  For some reason, at the time, I had been sitting on the front porch of our old house eating dried cheerios, while my father attempted to paint --onto canvas-- the spiraling beast dancing about before us.  This particular tornado was probably about a mile or two away from us at the time, so we probably weren't in any immediate danger.  I remember watching this twister move across the landscape, uprooting everything in its path and spewing debris back out with a vengeance.  I was too young at the time to fully comprehend that I should have been afraid of this tornado.  I can still see this twister spiraling about before me in my mind, as if the cyclone were right in front of me in this very moment.  I recall feeling the immense energy ... the power and intensity wielded by this storm.  That tornado was definitely a force of nature to be reckoned with, showing no mercy whatsoever to those unfortunate enough to be caught within its grasp.  The randomness of the funnel's motion, its indiscriminate behavior in selecting targets still strikes me with a confounding significance even to this very day.  I remember watching the tornado funnel work its way right towards us ... and I even have a vague recollection of my mother --clutching my baby sister in her arms-- calling for my dad and me to get off the porch and under the house into the safety of the storm shelter as the twister closed the distance on us ... but just when it seemed as if this twister was going to come right down the street, to swallow up my house --and even then fear had not found its way into me-- the writhing fury suddenly decided it would instead take a ninety degree turn and head off in another direction all-together.  So I never did have to go down into that storm shelter, and my father's painting turned out pretty cool from what I am able to recall of it.  I guess we were some of the lucky ones that summer evening so long ago?

No comments: