Thankful after Hurricane Michael 2018

Thankful after Hurricane Michael 2018

Most bumps in the road are smoothed by a
wild beach
new book
ripe fig from the front yard
belly laugh

I wrote the above while recovering
from surgery.

But Hurricane Michael of Oct 10-12, 2018, roaring
up the Gulf of Mexico from Cuba with the power of
a cataclysmic Category 4 tropical storm,
can’t be considered a bump in the road.

Sadly, there are 22 deaths to mourn in Florida
& still others, in other states H. Michael blasted.

Things are so in flux, next month’s election process
will be disturbed for our coast; officials also say it
may take years for some villages to ever function as before.

My city was spared all but discomfort –
nights and days without electric power,
streets blocked by tossed trees,
progress was rapid in #LOVETLH. Tree arborists hoisted snapped
pines from car & building roofs,
electric and cable line workers restored service.
We the people own the electric utility here; it is
very responsive.

My family in Tallahassee is grateful
for slight damage – loss of dogwood & Myer lemon
(fig tree still stands!) –
& we are more than grateful for First Responders
everywhere who take on 16-hour shifts to set things right.
Neighbors also pitch in, unasked, to help
clear yards of a fresh carpet of green pine needles,
or pull downed brown branches to the curb for collection.

What IF?
If we had taken our savings & become owners of coastal lands,
an idea we have had fun dallying with, we would have known,
signing papers, that the beautiful seashore places
will always, always, always
be mere shifting sands & will some time be in the eye of the storm,
so our purchase would have been a lark, a giant gamble.

A gamble –
knowing about the history of
guaranteed natural beach erosion &
the inevitable onslaught of Gulf of Mexico storms.
I feel very very sorry for children caught
up in this gamble that was not of their own
making. And I wish more grit than usual,
for adults who couldn’t call The Forgotten Coast,
as it is lovingly nicknamed by regional officials,
a second or third home, but their only home,
due to needed work or, happenstance.
Thousands of helpers are pitching in
during this unfortunate time,
not the least of these,
The American Red Cross/Hurricane Michael.

c.2018
allrightsreservedJGA
Spring 2018
Wild dunes at St. George Island State Park, pre-Hurricane Michael

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