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Topic: rain (10/17/05)
- TITLE: Summer of 42
By Mary Alice Bowles
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It was another Sabbath Sunday, Laura Lee awoke to blue skies and sunshine, just like every other day for the last three months. There had been no rain for so long that all the crops had dried up. The cornfield had dried up and died. The potato crop wilted and fell over. The green beans lay in yellow strands all over the field. Their best milk cow Edna had finally gave up and just dropped dead; There was not one living beast left in the field, except a few vultures flying overhead, continually flying overhead.
Her husband Billy finally gave up looking for rain and said, “Honey, I have to go get us some help. If I don’t get help, we are going to die". The next morning he took half the ration of water and headed across the mountain. Their nearest neighbor lived in Russell County Virginia, thirty miles away. As he was leaaving he told her "honey, I love you and I promise I’ll be back by daybreak in the morning. All I can tell you to do is just pray".
Well, she had done that and to the best of her ability, but this day things were different, she jumped out of bed and ran outside, looking toward the heavens, she started yelling at the top of her lungs and shaking her fist toward an invisible God. "Can you not hear me God? I’ve cried and prayed and believed you could open those skies? Where are you? Did you leave me? Help me, please help me God! If not me, then please God spare my babies".
Then she heard a cry from inside the house, "Momma where are You”? Two tiny heads peeked out the door, and then Laura Lee thought, Oh God help me, I have no more food left, what am I going to feed these babies today and there are only about four more dippers of water left in the bucket.
Then the trees from the Eastern woods parted and Laura could not believe her eyes, Out of the woods rode a rider on a black stallion. On that stallion rode a tall lonesome cowboy. He pulled on the reins and come to a perfect halt right in front of Laura Lees walk. He jumped from the stallion, his spurs clicking the walk and bouncing fire with each step. His hair was as black as a December night and around his belted blue jeans just to the right hung a tiny pearl handled knife and perfectly etched there it read, “King”!
King of what? King of where? Where did he come from. He looked into her eyes and she could see forever. His eyes were sky blue and danced with summer hues. His high cheek bones fit perfectly into his face and there was the beginning of two tiny dimples.
He said, “Howdy Mam could you spare a poor cowboy a little drink of water”?
It’s a long lonely road out there and a man can get awful thirsty! Then Laura Lee thought, “how could this cowboy ask me for a drink of water”? Can he not see the condition our land is in and where does he think I’m going to get him a drink"?
Then he smiled at her and his smile filled her with inner peace. She lifted the dipper out of the water bucket; it was full and running over. He drank long and hard and then he said, “Lady you have wonderful refreshing water. I see that you have tasted of the everlasting cup"! Then he turned to go, he walked down that path and the fire was clicking hot with each step. He climbed on his black stallion, tipped his black hat and smiled. The thunder rumbled and roared, the lightening flashed and cracked. The rains came down in floods and that black stallion man rode away on a lightening bolt still smiling and tipping his hat
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