April 30, 2009

Barbara Dalton


The world was gonna crash and burn on December 31st, 1999. Our bomb shelter was filled with the sustenance of life.

We canned food at the Mormon survival factories. We filled and labeled gallon sized tins with powdered milk, vanilla pudding and egg powder, and vacuumed out the air. My boys dutifully measured dehydrated peas. My daughters pitched tiny fingers into burlap sacks of wheat berries.

"This food will last five years," said the black-suited man to the long line of people waiting their turn.

I scanned dry food cookbooks, hungrily looking for recipes to replace my shepherd’s pie and spaghetti sauce. We bought hybrid seeds and a short wave radio. We bought elixirs and pills that purify water. My husband got a state of the art generator. Our firewood stacked higher than the weeping willow.

We had it all over the pedestrians. We gathered in weekly meetings with our like-minded friends and discussed the panic and chaos that would surely knock on our door. Some guy wailed over the radio from a stone fortress in Colorado.

All the clocks crept toward Zero.

In the morning of the year two thousand, I woke up. I saw from my kitchen window that snow had fallen the night before.

Then I noticed a sixteen point buck grazing by the pond and figured we wouldn’t need the meat.


Barbara Dalton is a professional artist who loves to write. Born in Boston, she works in her studio above a barn and lives on a farm with her cat, Rufus, in Southern Michigan. She has previously published a 'how to' article in Legacy Magazine and is currently working on her first novel, Lost in Place. Her media is 'found object' art and she displays her work in various galleries all over the country. Her blog is here.

No comments: