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Carol Perkins: The Wind Beneath My Tree

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By Carol Perkins

The sound of thunder cracked throughout the house except it wasn't thunder. It was the sound of a huge limb from the trunk of a pine tree falling across our front porch, landing on the roof and against the porch railings. The limb was the size of a tree itself. The only thing saving the front window was the porch. In the backyard, another tree fell to the ground like a feather. Guy had been wanting it gone. Mother Nature helped him get his wish.

Behind us, a neighbor's large outbuilding landed in another neighbor's yard. Blown off the foundation. Winds at seventy miles an hour command respect.

We've known of winds picking up horses and dropping them in a neighboring field like toy figures. We remember in 1964 when a tornado lifted the roof of the gym during the district tournament and another time when a tornado took the life of a former student who lived in a mobile home. Yet, some go about their business without a thought to the weather.

My dad didn't fear the way he should have. One time he walked outside during a storm to survey the sky with all of us telling him to come back inside. Ignoring us, he walked to his shop next door to check things out and during his stroll, the wind blew off the ball goal on a post, nearly hitting him. He got the message.

Growing up, it was a common occurrence during a storm for my brother and me to sit with our mother on a feather bed to be protected from lightning. Some people sat in their cars because the rubber tires, supposedly, protected them. During tornado watches/warnings, we filed into the basement with relatives who didn't have basements. I can clearly see my dad, the artist, working on one of his paintings as the rest of us, including aunts and uncles, watched and listened for the sound of a train (tornado).

Even then, we cannot fight Mother Nature, but we can be smart, find shelter and protect our families. Even those too stubborn to get out of their mobile homes might need a shove out the door.

You can contact Carol at

This story was posted on 2023-03-04 08:23:59
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