Storm

The storm shouts through tree limbs
Cracks and breaks
Whips branches to  frenzied tossing
Blows and whistles
Hammers  against windows and doors
Shrieks and groans
Pries open roofs, flings tiles to the sky
Never lessens to a moan
But instead increases its relentless noise
Until, astonishingly, we are forced to cover our ears
In our shelter at the buildings centre
Huddling

A barrage of artillery scatalogically fires
Bangs resound around
Items sharply spatter  the window
Cracking and splintering
Words struggle to encompass what we now hear
Howling winds crescendo
Tortured wood explodes into fragments
Breaking glass like sugar
The Nissan hut shudders creaks shifts
Exhales sobs sighs
Would weep we feel as we weep
Fearing the storms ferocity

Staccato thrumming is in fact the rain
Finally gentling
Light begins to filter between thrashing trees
The loud dark recedes
Easing ourselves from our shelter at the huts centre
To the shattered doors
To the belated soggy dawn
To the ruin without
Scrambling through huge debris
Living trees churned to matchsticks
English Oaks cut off at two foot high
By the mighty hand of the storm

 

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Written about my experience during the Great Storm of 1987. Thirty years ago, this storm hit Southern England like a hurricane — felling millions of trees.

Ironically, I was training to be a Weather Forecaster at the time (the storm was not forecast correctly), and I was living through the storm during the night of October 15th in a Nissan Hut at the UK Meteorological Office College.

Poem previously published on In Between Hangovers

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