...our lives forever changed the day she saw it.
It had been a day or two since watching the fireworks fill the night sky with spider webs the color of a rainbow over Walnut Creek Park. Later, I swore I could still hear the cannon blasts, like distant gunfire from across the county.
I was nine years old, enjoying summer break, sweating through a July heat wave. Humidity in the shape of a giant mushroom cloud, hovering over the state of Ohio. Its intensity was enough to make our cat pant like a dog and scurry for shade by ten a.m. I'd sneak up on him, a lazy orange tabby, its fur twisted and mangled from a territorial dispute with the neighboring tom, and blast him with the garden hose. He'd spring into the air, his back arched, a guttural screech causing every nearby sparrow to flutter about in graceless circles, and stumble for the bordering maples in the distance. Then I'd giggle to myself as he'd stop, just out of firing range, and offer me a grimace from across the yard as if to say, "Between you and me, that hit the spot."
It was later that evening when she saw it. There was never a warning of things to come. Never a chance to mentally prepare. It just happened, like things sometimes do...
...the final read/edit is in progress. A cover design has been chosen. And we're close..so close:)
"South of Charm" 2011