Thursday, June 23, 2011

Postcard from Yesterday

Yesterday was windy, today is almost misty, and the Gloriosa daisies have taken over my world.

I draw your attention today to the new poetry feature up at Escape Into Life, a set of "postcard" poems by Robert McDonald and wonderful collage art by Carly Bartel.

This is her piece called Lost.

My heart goes out to the people in Minot, North Dakota, faced with floodwaters, leaving and losing their homes. I was driving home from lunch with a friend yesterday, listening to the news on NPR just as the sirens went off in Minot, to tell people still near the waters to get out. The evacuation program was working well, and people have been through this before, so they know when it's time. After the destruction, "Some people just walk away," the reporter said, as there is sometimes nothing to rebuild.

In this CNN account, you'll see a call to help via the Red Cross.  And here in the Minot Daily News, at the bottom, you see the poignant cancellations of local events. At the top, the caption "Hope and Despair," and a resident facing the truth, "Unfortunately, it's all over."

Meanwhile, the ABC video and text report details as well the flooding along the Missouri River further south, endangering two nuclear power plants. The "catch-22" that flood waters could knock out power on a power plant, stopping the cooling system.

Soon we are to head that way to see family in Missouri and some coming from Omaha, also a danger zone, and I hope this annual get together can work out. If not, I am glad for the time we have had together.

Thinking of the woman in Minot, "You do what you can, and then you get out," her lip trembling.

13 comments:

Nancy Devine said...

thanks for posting about minot. i remember the 1969 flood there pretty well. i remember the 1997 flood here in grand forks too well. awful stuff.

ted tingley said...

Disasters suck.

Kathleen said...

Disasters do suck, Ted and Nancy. Seems like an onslaught lately, all over the world. Earthquakes, simmering volcanoes, tsunamis, flooding, nuclear threats aside from war, war. Of course, this has always been going on. And, as William Faulkner said, about all kinds of human disaster, we endure...and sometimes we prevail.

Maureen said...

My husband used to be stationed at Minot. He's on his way home from California this morning and we talked about the flooding. It seems as though disasters are everywhere. It's so easy for people to become disaster-weary and yet we have to respond to each as though it's the only one.

Love the McDonald poetry and collage art by Bartel.

Kathleen said...

Yes, Maureen, that's how I see it, too--each disaster is a terrible thing happening to those particular people.

On another topic, one of my poetry students said a past class told her, "Child abuse has been done," when she tried to handle her own personal material in art. That kind of dismissive cruelty or dismissive weariness is so astonishing.

Dale said...

"You do what you can, and then you get out."

That resonates.

Kathleen said...

It's resonating for me in lots of ways now, Dale. I've had jobs like that! Human relationships.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Thank you for Robert McDonald, his postcard poems, the link to his blog, and for Carly Bartel's collage art.

As the list of just domestic natural disasters grows, I think of the writers and photographers with WPA assignments during the Dust Bowl. We now have photos of everything, yet are always in need of insight, what meaning can be made of life being life.

Kathleen said...

I've been think of the WPA projects, too, Marylinn!

Catalyst said...

Thanks for thinking of Minot. I grew up 55 miles from there and started my career there many long decades ago.

Kathleen said...

It brings us all together, doesn't it, to feel sympathy or empathy or some connection to people during their time of trouble. Here, and all over the world.

Collagemama said...

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/06/24/opinion/20110624_SHAPTON_FRIDAY.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=thab1 Don't miss, Ms. Lap Swim!

Kathleen said...

Thanks, dear, will link for all!

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