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Anniversary

by Kristina Woodhill

A man talks on npr yesterday,
recounts Japan's year old tribulation;
the ground shook,
the nuclear power plant
where he worked
looked within and spoke,
self realized;
the waters receded
as tiny two legs ran
like in a badly filmed old movie
where people pretend to run
and the scenery behind
keeps scrolling,
as the ocean pulled
back its great sling shot,
forgetting wooden and mortar
sand castles
are so hard
to rebuild

the man's voice still shakes
the man's tears still flow
he is earthquake
he is tsunami

03/10/2012

Author's Note: To clarify, this is a response to an interview with an American worker who was at the Fukushimi plant when the earthquake/tsunami hit.

Posted on 03/10/2012
Copyright © 2016 Kristina Woodhill

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Elizabeth Jill on 03/10/12 at 11:36 AM

:***

"as the ocean pulled
back its great sling shot,"
is -> just so vivid and wow -> worded
Posted by Jody Pratt on 03/10/12 at 01:26 PM

Has it been a year already? Sometimes I feel life is slipping by because looking at the time it takes disasters to have anniversaries... I feel like the shock must have taken 9 months to wear off. The tsunami, the gulf oil spill, the miners in Chili... these things all feel like they happened yesterday.

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 03/10/12 at 03:00 PM

Poor Japan, having suffered so much in the past 67 years, especially with nuclear power. Your poem is an excellent capture Kristina, that reminds us how fortunate we are to be living elsewhere. The Japanese people are quite resilient though; they will rebuild, but hopefully not sand castles.

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 01:18 PM

POWERFUL!!!!!

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 01:21 PM

*NOTE-I was born on Pearl Harbour Day....so I am always reminded....whether I like it or not....anyway, this is quality writing imho...and Ienjoyed the intake very much...thx, always 4 sharing!

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 02:00 PM

..oh my ...sorry about the broken up posts...and what i meant to day is that i see more in these words than just the events of the earthquake/tsunami...on another level...which, to me makes the poem much more powerful than even the poet's/artist's original intent!

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 02:05 PM

...and these are the most powerful (and my favorite lines):

as the ocean pulled
back its great sling shot,
forgetting wooden and mortar

sand castles
are so hard
to rebuild

the man's voice still shakes
the man's tears still flow
he is earthquake
he is tsunami

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 02:07 PM

I love your style of writing....your phrases,your descriptions....VIVID!

Posted by Clara Mae Gregory on 03/11/12 at 02:12 PM

..and I meant to say "say" not "day".....ooops ooops ooops oops(and I hate this Windows 7....it keeps giving me problems...I'll spare ya, LOL)

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 03/11/12 at 02:21 PM

You so well catch the continuing trauma and suffering as a result of the most devastating tsunami in Japan's history.

Posted by Alison McKenzie on 03/11/12 at 04:25 PM

I couldn't imagine that a disaster like that would go away after many years. I especially appreciate, at the end, the man becoming the physical embodiment of the wake of that horrible day. Well said.

Posted by Philip F De Pinto on 03/12/12 at 11:00 AM

this is a splendid poem, Kristina, and I echo Elizabeth, with that marvelous line about the ocean pulling back its sling shot, and yes sand castles are indeed difficult to rebuild and even build initially.

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