|Boulders in Texas Canyon, AZ|
Sometime after that mother tried to calm my imaginative mind by telling me that the reason she and my father left California after I was born was because an earthquake knocked me off the bed, and I banged my head on the floor! We'd be
safe back in Oklahoma or Kansas, she explained. I can only laugh now, as Oklahoma ranks as the state with the most earthquakes per year. To date I've only felt one of them.
As for The Devil at 4 O'Clock, Spencer Tracy tried so hard to save lives that I cried for him, but still I shook at the thought of a volcano erupting and lava grabbing my ankle and burning me alive. "It is hard for a man to be brave when he knows he is going to meet the devil at four o'clock," is the proverb from which the title came. When Mt. St. Helen's erupted I was transfixed to the television shots, but couldn't understand why those watching weren't afraid. Fearless or just curious, what led them to stand, to take pictures, to think that they could stand up to nature?
Why do we stand outside and study the clouds for tornadoes? I think there is just a tinge of fear, but the fascination overrides our senses.
We drove our children through the National Parks of the western states, and felt with them the eagerness
|Sequoia Trees Katy, Letty, Matt 1985|
Now my husband and I take the time to explore the
|White Sands National Park|
Ironically, what began as a story about the Sky Islands of Arizona, led me to read about their unique history and from there my mind began to unravel. The information took me around another corner of my mind. I remembered author Byrd Baylor, and her literally connections to the desert Southwest. But those will be other stories. My mind, instead, settled on a childhood fear that I faced and rather enjoyed getting to know.
Now, I hope that when we take our Alaskan cruise that the Pacific tectonic plates won't buckle and cause an earthquake and tsunami that will roll our ship. Ah, another fear is shivering inside of me, I imagine having to hold my breath underwater as long as Shirley Winters did in The Poseidon Adventure.
**On another note I'm writing a series of stories on the Imagination for Oklahoma Women Bloggers in the month of April. I hope you will click on the link and go read one of those stories.