I Will Never Forget
by Laurie Kolp
Hurricane Rita- I will never forget
how five years ago,
we stayed in one small room
for three long weeks that seemed like years;
the five of us starving for shelter
in our disheveled world,
and the four of them so graciously
opening their home up to us.
I watched our young children
as they slept at the foot of our double bed,
three sleeping bags spread out just right-
far enough to allow space,
close enough to provide comfort.
I will never forget how before we evacuated,
I had packed the children’s favorite
stuffed animals to cuddle with,
toys to play with
and books to read;
one of each for each child-
only nine familiar things from home-
how was I to know it would be
three long weeks that seemed like years,
or that we might not have a house to go home to?
I will never forget the cataclysm, the mayhem
we faced upon our eventual return;
after three long weeks that seemed like years
the town we knew was gone.
Massive trees blocked roads, split homes in two,
toppled power lines tangled like webs,
roofs flown, water damage, mold, litter widespread;
would this family of five ever recover
from the wrath of Hurricane Rita,
or was she simply a catalyst
for what was to come two years later?
Hurricane Ike- I will never forget.