The Night I Heard a Tornado Siren and Ignored It

The thunder sounded like someone throwing firecrackers up against the window. The rain fell in cycles of noise, like a crowd doing the wave in a huge stadium. Then I heard another sound, faint, hidden under everything else, but suddenly very much there.

I sat up on the fold-out sofa bed. The springs creaked and squeaked. I heard something underneath me, realized that Sam had crawled under the bed in his sleep (again). But that wasn’t the sound that commanded my attention.

I walked through the flashing strobes of light to the window. Off in the distance, through every other sound, I could hear a tornado siren droning on and on.

* * * * *

I never heard a tornado siren before, but I knew what it was.

Other people in the house heard it, but no one was paying it any attention.

So I went back to bed.

* * * * *

What’s the far-off, barely audible siren warning you about in your life? Are you going to pay attention to it, or are you going to let the apparent indifference of everyone else in our culture lull you into ignoring it?

3 Replies to “The Night I Heard a Tornado Siren and Ignored It”

  1. I don’t know about sirens in my life, and I promise to think about it, but, in Tulsa, it seems like the siren means “get up and check the TV.” It rarely means get in the closet. The first time we did get in the tornado closet, our neighbors mocked us the next day. What’s up with that?

Comments are closed.