The storm arrived fast. There had been no tell tale clouds in the sky. No predictions of rain in the forecast. In fact, until the moment the storm arrived, you would never have guessed that there was even the vaguest possibility of foul weather.
It started with some mild howling. She didn't want to do her reading, she said. There was a law against kids having to do homework in the summer, she said. This progressed into precipitation - tears rolling down her cheeks as she is sent to her room, foot steps thundering away as she stomped off, muttering loudly about fairness.
Moments later, like lightening setting a meadow afire, she returned to curse at her mother. She hated her, she said. She wanted to live with her grandmother.
The mother, calm and passive until that moment, is struck by the lightening of her daughters fury. It passes from body to body, the smell of ozone lingering in the air.
The mother gets up and leaves the room for the kitchen, beginning to make dinner. The storm follows
her. Upon opening the freezer, a water bottle falls out and cracks - the plastic shattering into jagged shards. The second crash follows on the heels of the first, as the glass coffee carafe falls into the sink and breaks.
The mother now storms from spot to spot, trying to clean the glass and plastic and cook at the same time. The daughter returns, rumbling about the choice of dinner as the thunder cloud of her mother moves from mess to mess.
The storm cloud expands, mother and daughter echoing the thunder back and forth...
until , like all storms, it passes. The child is fed. The mother cleans the mess. The quiet is restored. You would almost not know that the storm had rolled through, save for the melting ice bits, slowly melting on the kitchen floor.
Originally posted at Gimlet Eye, July 11, 2007