I see my first naked woman the day the flood waters recede. Golden brown skin and round in all the right places, she reclines against one of the many tree branches littering mammaw's yard, among the jetsam memories washed from houses near and far. Her smile invites me in, but all I see is further devastation in her eyes.
Cool pizza and quickly warming chocolate milk, our dinner on the parquet floor of the middle school gym, an island in the streams flowing where roads once traipsed through the country side. Lights flicker and we are reminded of the severity of our situation and thankful for a dry patch of ground. Our ark arrives shortly, a family friend in his four wheel drive truck, now heading slowly for our home on the hill. Our faces press against the chilled glass of the window, staring back at the souls left to mercy.
Bathtubs fill to the brim, in case the power to the well house goes out. Ironic, as all the water we would ever need is falling from the sky, raindrops thundering miniature explosions in the murky puddles littering the saturated ground. Through the picture window we watch the river grow fangs and begin to gorge on the landscape.
Sweet and sour smells assail our sense, burning our eyes with pungent aroma, as we survey the damage to the peaceful hollow that nestles mammaw's house. An eerie calm settles across the land, water receding into the bowels of the earth once more, leaving behind wreckage of so many lives scattered here and there, clinging to trees, or whatever dam that would stop its free flow on the raging flood waters.
There she lays, bare before me, washed out of someone's night time fantasies. She whispers with longing, to take her with me. Carefully, I pry her from her resting place, then crumple the page between my fingers, tossing her in with the other refuse. Her promises are empty, and should I give her my heart, she will wreak more havoc than the flood on whence she came.