September 23, 2010

Jun de la Rosa

STORM NEWS

vi.

A cyclone smashed into Madagascar,
hit the island a second time
three days later; a ferry sinking.

The news brings to us cyclones,
while beach stories are told
among sisters, during storms.

v.

Hurricane slammed the Florida coast.
Chasing it required large amounts of food,
and a megaphone.

If a woman dives into a river
and no one is there to see it,
the body, hands first,
still makes a cutting sound.

iv.

A storm swept out to sea,
beyond Northern Japan—
later lowered to tropical storm,
downgraded to tropical depression.

What a wonder how water
can take so many forms:
a lady turning into a bride,
then a nagging housewife.

iii.

Indonesian plane skidded off the runway
under heavy rains, split into two,
came to rest near a cemetery:
100 yards of prayers.

Water nears,
from Madagascar to Indonesia.
The pond in the garden waits,
expecting an angry mother.

ii.

26 people swept away
by raging floodwaters in Nueva Ecija;
villages buried in a sea of mud.

And water has found us—
with windows closed,
we only know storm
by the sound it makes
against the roof, a swinging door.

i.

Death toll rose
with the super typhoon named after a man.

Later, water will be poured into mugs—
boiling, black, without sugar:
small servings of the storm,
silently brewing.

from Rattle #24, Winter 2005
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