A Storm is Coming


Manang Etta had opened her eyes as soon as she heard the stalks of the bamboo floor creaking under Socorro’s weight. While picking up strewn house dresses, Socorro observed that she seemed more lucid than she had in the last few weeks; however, whatever hopes she had were soon dashed by a fit of wet coughs.

Once it was over, Manang Etta intoned above the buzz of hundreds of tiny wings beating against their prisons, “I had a dream last night, borne on the wings of the cicadas. A typhoon of immense power is coming to our shores. It will be here exactly one week from now, and its wrath will wash all things into the bay. None will be able to flee it.”

Socorro straightened up, arms full of smelly garments. “You are sure of this, manang?”

“Fool girl,” Manang Etta answered. “I feel as if I have wasted this last year and a half on you. Have you learned nothing at all about insects?”

“I have learned plenty more here with you than when I was in convent school,” said Socorro. She fidgeted and her ears roared. “All the same, I’d rather that what you are telling me is not true and will not come true. You need to be moved.”

“That won’t be necessary,” Manang Etta cut in. “We do not speak of this, but I know you know I will not live out the year.”


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