Quench My Thirst

This poem was written in September of 2005 immediately following Hurricane Katrina, as we were still hearing news of children being sent to school, but not knowing if their parents were alive.

I was saddened, frustrated, and angered by the events that took place after the climatic disaster, and harnessed those feelings into a poem. In 2005, I dedicated the poem to those who survived the messy aftermath and then rebuilt, despite the hardships they lived through.

Ten years later, when I read my own words, I was humbled by the expression of emotions I felt so strongly a decade ago. I realize it is time to share the words, and feelings, with others.

By sharing the poem, what I wish to express is tri-fold in nature: first, to honor both those who passed and those who lived through the ordeal; second, to remind us that we do not wish to repeat such a lack of immediate response to any similar tragedy; and third, to express gratitude to those who did respond and help, and to the many heros then rising out of the waters.

Posted With Love, 

Katie

Quench my Thirst

Gravesites and cell fights
Makeshift and mean
Survival tends to suspend
The rules of the game

No longer fun
No longer tame

I need to see tomorrow
Trying to stay sane

Some say the sun sets
Over the big barge
It’s on the other side now
Not knowing that it’s day

Nobody’s laughing
Nobody’s sure

I see a mother grasping
Trying to stay sane

I taste the cleanest water
In my brother’s tears
We met just yesterday
Walking through our fears

And death, and muck
And stench and FURY
From the lack of help and caring
And where the hell’s my fix?

A smoke, my Coke
My insulin

No longer fun
No longer tame

Trying to save Grace
Trying to stay sane

I bury the fury
With the dog she still loves

Need to prove my name
Trying to fight blame

Nobody’s laughing
Nobody’s sure

They saved me a school seat

But I’d rather find my Pop

Trying to stay sane
It’s now a dirty game.

Katherine Augustine 9/05

Dedicated to the victims and survivors of Hurricane Katrina


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