Monday, August 23, 2010

Hurricane Katrina, 5 Years Later
In recognition of the upcoming5-year ann anniversary of one of the most, if not the most horrific natural events in history, and as a tribute to those who suffered emotionally and/or physically, I'd like to share the following poems:


Spike gave the world another birds eye view,
a reminder
Of the devastation and destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina

He offered a fitting tribute to the lives lost, many unnecessarily

As our government put on blinders and pretended not to see

As men, women and children, old and young alike

Begged, screamed and cried and pleaded for help 

Some from atop rooftops, atop bridges, while some floated in infested waters

Waters that continued rising, rising, rising up to the sky

Hurricane Katrina may be partly to blame for some of the destruction and lives lost

But a huge burden rests on the shoulders of the government of this free land in the US of A

Spike's documentary serves as a poignant reminder

That not much has changed for those who survived this horrific event

And while there are many who say they're tired of hearing about Hurricane Katrina and its victims

That it was almost a year ago and those people need to move on, get over it

Let this serve as a reminder that
There are still entire communities that resemble war-ravaged countries

There are still countless don't anyplace to live and are waiting on FEMA trailers to call home

There are still countless who are waiting on schools to enroll their children in

There are still countless who are waiting for their ruined homes to be torn down and the debris taken away

There are still bodies being recovered under this debris

There are still over one hundred people who have not been found

There are hundreds of bodies that have yet to be identified in makeshift morgues

So in union with the countless individuals who are still going through it

I beg you to stand in support of these people
Help give them a voice in hopes of giving them some closure

Help give them courage to go on in spite of having lost everything they've ever owned

And prayerfully your voice, your help will make their voices, their cries louder

So that our government WILL be held accountable

To help the people of New Orleans and the Gulf region

Get back a sense of normalcy, a sense of belonging 

Because while nothing will be the same for the victims ever again

With your voice and your help, we can continue to give them hope

For if there is no hope, there surely can be no future.
God help them,
God help us all.


New Orleans, pronounced N’Awlins, also known by many as The Big Easy
Endless adult entertainment twenty-four/seven/three hundred sixty-five
Wide-eyed wonder and gleeful amazement for first-timers visitors.

Only party-goers roam the streets of Bourbon in the French Quarter
Revelling in the wicked waters that flow from the fountain taps
Lazily, haphazardly visitors stumble from one bar to another
Each forward step taken clumsier than the ones before
As the sounds of Blues and Cajun serenade the night
Never a dull moment in the city that never sleeps
Specially at Mardi Gras, the grand party of all.

Hurricanes Katrina and Rita attempted to wash you from the face of the earth
Blowing away and pouring tons of its own waters from the rivers and lakes
As men, women and children people were desperate for higher grounds
While many homes have literally been uprooted, torn from foundations
But through it all the spirit of New Orleanians won’t let them quit
For you can take the people out of this great city of New Orleans
But you can’t take the spirit of New Orleans out of the people
Just give them time, time to regroup, reenergize, rebuild
And New Orleans will once again emerge and Jazz
Fest, Essence Fest, Mardi Gras, Bayou Classic,
Sugar Bowl, Super Bowl, Jambalaya, Gumbo,
Crawfish, Red Beans and Rice, Coffee and
Beignets, they’ll all be back and better
Than before with the same resilience
And wonder that the Crescent City
Is infamous for the world over.
Laissez les bons temps rouler.


Hurricane Katrina announced its arrival
Unleashing its wrath
Raging uncontrollably
Randomly, yet
Catapulting catastrophe
And annihilating anything as it swirled and twirled
Nervously from town to town crossing state lines
Erratically about.

Killing aimlessly
Adults and children alike with its
Take no prisoner attitude
Indigently leaving empty spaces of
Nothingness where there was once familiarity on
August 29th, the year of our Lord Two Thousand and Five.

1 comment:

Cornelle Keveen said...

Truth written in the form of verse, elegantly espressed and poignantly profound.

Beautiful words Ms. Johnson.