Sharp lightning stabbed the clouds and pierced a hole that scorched the greening branches down below. Sun, much aggrieved, beamed fingers through, and stole the sparking ashes’ phosphorescent glow. The clouds, distressed at what the lightning did, and wanting to conceal the dreadful sight, built thunderheads to form a rumpled lid. But sun whipped out its swords, resolved to fight. Its nimble thrusts and resolute assault cut through the blackened shield to slash a path of blinding brightness, forcing gloom to halt. Sky’s lamentation cleansed the aftermath while thundered clouds now cut to ribbons, red and streaked with evening’s blood, closed ranks and fled. Beth Staas taught writing at the high school and college levels for some twenty years and has been listed in Who’s Who among American Teachers. She has been published in numerous national periodicals. Her poetry has won or placed in numerous contests and included in several anthologies and websites. She is past president and current treasurer of Poets and Patrons and member of ISPS and Poets Club of Chicago.