Curled up in my silk navy blanket, I listen to the growl of the thunder and the rain beating on the windows. Flashes of light illuminate the powerless room every few seconds as I shuffle closer to the fireplace and watch the flames dance ominously. The smell of burning wood cautiously filled the room. My mother staring into nothingness, was rhythmically creaking her rocking chair. Her stressed peppered hair silently swaying with every rock. The thunder and howling wind drowning out the silence of the frigid night. The sounds of the storm were interrupted by banging on the door that make my mother and I jump out of our trance. We stare at each other for a minute and wonder who on earth would dare go out in a storm like this. By the time we made it to the door, the stranger was already adding noise to the thunder a second time. I turn the handle and the wind opens the door for me. In the entryway, a sodden young man in green, that smelled of gunpowder stood in the entryway. His face was somber as I looked in his hands and melted. My heart and I crashed to the ground in shock and sobs. Both rain and tears wet my face. My mother stood in the doorway with ocean eyes replaced for saucers, not able to tear her eyes away from the object in the man’s hands. Every emotion possible swelled inside of me. My father had returned home, but he had come back in the form of a folded flag.
October 24, 2017