Saturday, July 18, 2015

SUNDAY SNIPPETS by Ginger Simpson #sundaysnips 07/19/15

Another offering from Odessa.  Week before last...before the re-run, the wagon Odessa and her father traveled in overturned, pinning her father beneath the wheel.

The dirt unfurled like a brown ribbon between the expanse of cactus and sagebrush. Odessa, refusing to let her father see her hopelessness, blinked back tears.

Anger heated her blood. This was all her fault. First her mother died giving birth, and now her father was dying because of her. He wanted her to have a woman’s influence in her life—have more opportunities. Their trip had gone smoothly until Papa whipped the horses to a faster pace to combat the heat—stir a breeze where none existed. The same wheel that spun now had been the one that slipped into a ragged rut and tipped the wagon over. She’d jumped clear, but her father remained pinned beneath the sideboard from the waist down. The accident snapped the harness rigging, and the animals ran off. What she wouldn’t give for one to wander back right now.

She rushed to the other side and pulled with all her might on the front wheel. Praying for strength, she gritted her teeth and tugged until splinters from the prickly-wooded spoke tore into her flesh. There was nothing she could do. The wagon wouldn’t shift.

Something stung above her left eye and she swiped her knuckles across the spot. Blood mixed with the dirt on her hand and created rust-colored mud. She wiped the stain on her sleeve and scanned the area for something to use for leverage. Her father had often lifted things by using a piece of wood or a log from a fallen tree. She hitched up her skirt and traipsed through sparse knee-high growth, praying to find something—anything. 

 “Stay with me, Papa, I’m looking.” She cast another hopeful glance at the trail. Still no one in sight. Why had they decided to make this wretched trip to Phoenix?  Just because Aunt Susan lived there? Odessa’s stomach churned with fear and her mind spun in a hundred directions. What if she couldn’t get Papa out? 

She spied nothing but rocks, boulders and a broken saguaro limb too rotten to use. Her shoulders sagged as she returned empty handed to the wagon. Her father’s face appeared even more ashen and his breathing ragged. A scarlet pool colored the dirt beneath him. She hunkered beside him and took his hand. Why had God let this happen?

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