Sandstorm

Thousands of Needles

She was a young girl
Living in a company compound
The only barrier between her
And the vast Arabian desert
A chain link fence

One day after school
A haboob, a desert sandstorm
Swept in through that flimsy fence
Thousands of needles
Drove into the thin skin
Of her face, arms and legs

She was not dressed
For the desert
She was dressed
As an American girl
Of the 1960s
In a sleeveless mini dress

She was blinded by the storm
By the flying needles of sand
When she opened her eyes
They stabbed her
When she shut her eyes
The grit remained

She could not see
She was lost in the storm
She had no idea where to go
What to do
Aside from wait

Even as an adult
Her memory is of
Thousands of needles
Stabbing her
Blinding her
Leaving her lost

Not of how it ended
Not of how or when the storm ended
Not of how or when she got out of the storm