“Sound Evokes Smell of Cordite” Tanka 511

Stark, cool, cloudless sky,

air med-evac’s whomp-whomp-whomp

just over tree-tops…


For a moment, medulla

sends me: Fright! Flight! Fight!*


*(Little did I know until hours later Sanford us sundered about school-start time with serial shooting from apparently one longtime bad actor who allegedly killed a girlfriend and critically wounded her two children and shot some others.  I was writin’ and readin’ and had just finished watering by hand some transplants and planning the day as I awaited my brother and sister-in-law to go out in the field for Gopher Tortoise location work.  The several-incident gunplay took place just blocks away from our old family home and was about a half-mile from the office and my garden where I sat unawares.  Such a sad commentary that the gunfire was so commonplace: but it took the thwocking sounds of a helicopter emergency medevac flight going to the big field opposite the middle school across from me to take what I assumed to be casualties of some kind of car wreck to a trauma center further away.  For a moment I flashed back to decades ago when low-flying smallish helo-noises were harbingers of impending contact and my central nervous system kicked in to Vietnam-mode.)

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