On-Demand Writing- Uniform Prompt
My family thought our lives were absolutely perfect. My twelve year old mind
thought so, too, until our Sunday paper arrived. I heard the clunk of the mail slot, and
sprinted to get the first peek of the paper. People on the first page were being
interviewed by frantic news reporters, wanting to know reasons for our year long hot
weather. I thought they were crazy, until they were right.
Days went by, and the hot temperatures got worse. Hot baths were long gone,
replaced with iced cold water. We had all ate the cold foods we could eat, no more ovens
or fires, if you were rich enough. Our family had a fire, and a pan. We stopped doing
that yesterday. I slipped out of my thoughts as my younger sister, Leesh, yelled out
names. "Mom! Dad! Mary! Come see this!"
The yell was far distance, followed by a scream so high pitch, I sprinted outside,
into the woods to find Leesh. Mom and Dad followed, pale with panic and worry. I
smelled my own blood, from all the thorns in our woods. I felt the trickling on my legs,
my bare legs, and arms, lucky my sundress hasn't yet ripped. "Leesh! Leesh - where are
you?" I saw our fallen treehouse, and something a little beyond the trees.
"Mom, Dad, get Leesh down. I think I see something beyond the trees!" They
opened there mouths to say something, but they were lost for words, as I ran. Tree
branches, sticks, thorn bushes, and stumps were my obsticales. I noticed the animals all
ran the oppisite way, with fear and shock in their faces and eyes. I got to the end, staring
in shock at the terrifying sight in front of me.
Over the hills, rather then sun and clouds, I saw it. A big, pitch black cloud,
thousands and thousands of feet tall, making any tree look like action figures. It moved
with the wind blowing its way towards me. It came up the last hill, the one I stood on.
The dust cloud swallowed me, and it whipped me in the face, stinging me like needles
piercing every inch of my helpless body. I still sprinted, as fast as my legs could take
me, swallowing the dust in my mouth, nose, and burning eyes. I wheezed, coughed, and
barely breathed. I felt myself suffocating, rembering my name, will myself I would make
it. You can do this Mary, you can get out of this. I opened my mouth to scream, instead
filling myself with gallons of dust in my throat and lungs. I realized I was finally back in
the woods, almost reaching my terrified family. I took huge rock, and wrote with siliva
and dust. My vision blurred and I tripped over tree branches, rocks, and anything in my
way. I tumbled, over my head, crashing on the ground. I felt myself suffocate before my
head hit the rock, never seeing light or dust, as my body shut down.
In this on-demand
writer tells the
story of a
girl and her
family caught in
a dust storm
during the days
of the Dust Bowl.
She focuses it
with the huge
is a girl
who is terrified
by the storm
as she is
caught up in it.
a bit of
at the beginning
of the narrative,
the piece. The
dialogue; most of
the detail is
is a significant
amount of precise
language used to
a bit overly
dramatic for an
this grade level.
reflect on the
the Standards require).