TITLE: I Will Dec 6, 2012
By Margo McKenzie
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We were warned,
so we evacuated.
The rain fell.
The winds howled.
The moon called. The ocean responded and escaped rising farther and farther from its borders roaring into our space.
Today the sun shines.
We return to resume our lives
to find our streets lined with sands from the shore.
The fragrance of our air replaced by the stench of oil and sewage and sea.
Sea weed slapping along aluminum fences in perfect formation
of five foot high lines.
Of course she didn't knock on doors to gain entrance,
Sandy tore doors off their hinges
filled basements and first floors with her presence.
She moved everything in her path:
cars, boats,10 feet of boardwalk
The world that I knew no longer existed.
But we continued our walk down our once familiar block
and stopped at where our house should have been.
Locked in shock, eyes filled with tears.
My mind sought refuge in other places.
And I heard Langston’s mother talking to her son about it. How hers had cracks
and places where the carpet was worn after so many ascending and descending feet busy earning enough to rent a box to house family until
she could gather enough to afford her own.
She found a way to go on.
She didn't let the nails impede or the holes trip or missing carpet discourage.
No, she kept going.
So, tho Sandy had retreated and taken our house with hard-earned relics of time and overtime, promotions, Christmases, graduations and dreams,
she did leave something valuable behind,
and they were still white
and along each side
there was the same handrail
that I could lean on
to steady my steps
and prevent me from falling.
The steps may not lead to our door anymore,
but they were there,
all five of them
leading to anywhere we wanted to go.
The choice was ours.
I knew what I had to do.
I would not sit
because life was now harder than I could ever imagine.
I would stand and climb again leaning
on the same handrail that has supported me in the past.
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