Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Happy (07/12/07)
- TITLE: Pink Lightening
By Marty Wellington
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Unseen waves of wind accosted the trees, as the farm family struggled up the hill to the horse barn, nestled among an army of oak and maple giants.
The littlest Obermann, Sarah, sat atop her father’s shoulders, adorned in oversized purple rubber boots and her favorite hot pink t-shirt and shorts. A curly blonde ponytail flipped back and forth to the beat of her father’s footsteps. Her four-year-old arms wrapped around her father’s neck in a stranglehold.
“La da la la la. La da la la.” Sarah’s shrill voice sang a make-believe chorus that echoed on the winds. Her father smiled.
Her two older sisters ran ahead of their mom and dad, eager to reach the sweet smell of hay and horses. Youth was eager, full of exploration and wonder. The three Obermann girls were no different.
What was a tedious task to mom and dad each evening proved an adventure for three girls who loved horses.
“C’mon Dad. Hurry up. The storm’s comin’.” Mary, the oldest, was always ready to direct the action. At 13, she was well equipped with a strong will and the determination to grow into a perfect horsewoman.
“We’re comin’ honey. Give your old man a chance. I’ve got this little sprite on my shoulders.” Sarah giggled as Dad gave her rubber boots a tug.
Arriving at the barn, Mary and her sister, Hannah, retrieved halters and leads. Dad grabbed a bucket of grain to entice the horses from the far reaches of their pasture.
Mom and little Sarah settled into the task of preparing the stalls for the horses—refreshing water buckets, throwing hay and portioning grain for each.
“I’m a big helper, aren’t I, Mom?”
“Yes, Sarah. I’m so proud of you.”
The littlest Obermann was a bundle of energy, flitting through the tack room, twirling around her mom. “I love my horse, Mom. I want to ride him.”
“Not yet, Sweetie. You’re not quite big enough. He’s not even broke yet.” Mom shook her head—a twinkle in her grass green eyes betrayed clear amusement.
“I’m gonna ride him all over the fields and roads some day. We’re gonna fly through the skies, aren’t we?” Sarah’s hand held tight to a plastic pink pony with sparkling mane and tail. They flew around the barn on a magical ride, to wondrous places only they could experience.
“Yes, Sarah. I think you might.”
“Saaaarraaah. Saarraah. C’mon on out here and I’ll give you a ride.” Dad’s voice carried clear and bright across the back pasture. He was leading the youngest gelding, Spirit, through the pasture gate, just as Sarah came throp-throp-thropping up to him in her clunky boots.
Oversized raindrops splattered the dusty driveway, but Sarah didn’t care. Her pink pony was in her pocket and Spirit would soon be hers too. Dad hefted his pink princess up on Spirit’s back. The horse pricked its ears back, listening, waiting. Deciding the little girl was harmless, he moved forward following Dad’s lead rope into the sweet grain heaven of the barn.
“Ready to go, Sweetheart?”
While rain trickled down her face, Sarah giggled. “He’s just like my pink pony. We’re gonna fly, fly, fly to special places.”
Flashes cut across the dusky sky, opening up glimpses into heaven.
“Look, Dad. It’s pink lightening.” Little Sarah squealed with delight. “God made pink, don’t you think?”
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