Furious orange skies, scoured by prairie dust cast aloft, alerted us a tornado was approaching. But who could predict where we’d take cover, wedged in a gymnasium basement, surrounded by sixteen squads of visiting varsity cheerleaders? Warning sirens are howling above us like maenads, but the pep rally continues undeterred; a hundred blended voices are chanting to out-shout the wind. Pompoms flare around us like fistfuls of chrysanthemums, pumping hands pummel us elbow-to-knee. We are popcorn, tossed into a softly exploding cellophane fire.
K Roberts is a professional non-fiction writer, a published artist, and a first reader in fiction at the Canadian magazine Nunum. Recent work has appeared in Five on the Fifth, Club Plum, Words & Sports Quarterly, and Heron Tree.