From The Double Lx

'Have you ever been in one'? , asked Langley.
Miggi looked at him as if he were simple.
'Of course', he replied. lots. This is Cuba. The Caribbean is a hurricane incubator.
Langley thought of The Tempest. Wasn't Prospero's island supposed to be Cuba?
The TV said the hurricane would reach land in two days, around dawn. What was a tropical storm had been upgraded to Hurricane Ruthie, though that name was hard to say in Spanish and called for a tough tongue placement.Nevertheless, that was what the American Weather Service named it. To Miggi, it was simply the first big hurricane of '84, and needed no other name. After a while, all names lost meaning. Hurricanes were big, medium or little. Sometimes they just brought lots of rain and hardly seemed worth the name at all.

'This is my first', said Langley, with a shiver. Doubtfully, he scanned the swiftly-moving clouds.

From a table on the Avenue, they were drinking the strong Cuban coffee and watching the big swells crash against the stalwart Malecon. Sometimes the waves exploded into high-flung droplets of fat-colored seawater. You could even hear them sizzle. The fringes of their umbrella fluttered nervously in the wind, until Miggi lowered it. At sea, the sky was an unheakthy yellow-gray. A cloud-cover had hidden the sun and the pre-noon air was hot and heavy.

'This, too, shall pass', replied Miggi, with a 'that's-all-you-can-say finality that sounded portentous but was probably just meant to sound simple, 'I suppose', answered Langley. As a cleric, he felt more comfortable issuing that sort of remark than being on its receiving end. But, curious, he wanted to know the essence of everything.

'Gee, what makes a hurricane a hurricane, I wonder. Why here? Why now?

It was mid-September. Langley and Miggi saw....

by Morgan Michaels

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