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JoelJosol

Unwashed

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JoelJosol
------- Revised -----------

Such memories don't get washed out back to sea,
to be unseen, lost in the turmoil between
once a road and network or paths or labyrinth
but there is no power to lift up the darkness
from the heart or the dead, darkened by the sun
from a blue sky where once a wind howled
with belligerence, road rage, red-faced, pummeling
but of course, there is no remorse
for a hit-and-run victim, bloodied and abandoned
on the beach like pebbles, shells, white sand,
overrun by waters, moving to and fro.

------- Original ------------
Such memories don't get washed out
back to sea, to be unseen, lost
in the turmoil between once a road
and network or paths or labyrinth
but there is no power to lift up
the darkness from the heart,
or the dead, darkened by the sun
from a blue sky where once a wind
howled with belligerence, road rage,
red-faced, pummeling the wheels,
but, of course, there is no remorse,
like a hit-and-run victim, bloodied,
and abandoned on the beach like pebbles,
shells, white sand, overran by waters,
moving to and fro.
* Written with the super-typhoon Hainan Filipino victims in mind.

"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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Tinker

Hi Joel, When I first heard the news of the typhoon in the Phillipines my thoughts went to you and your safety. You are my connection to that world and I am relieved to read this powerful account of the event that you share here. It tells me you are OK and it paints a vivid picture of the event as observed by someone close.

 

~~Tink


~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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JoelJosol

Thanks Tink. I had a choice to stay behind in the typhoon zone with my work colleagues and go through it or take my scheduled flight out and be with my family. In the end, I chose to leave and be with my family. This piece is so much like my other poem, "Of dust, paper, and steel", trying to distill the unbelievable horror that my countrymen went through. I chose to be father and husband first before the adventurous persona that I am, wanting to be a witness (photographer and poet) where the event is, and ready to sprung to action once it subsided. But, no one foresaw the lost in communications, the unpassable roads, the disabled airports, the loss of lives among the first responders themselves, the storm surge as high as 10 feet (almost tsunami-like).

 

And now I am in Singapore far away from where the hurting is. I use social media to broadcast comforting messages (taking up my role now as a minister) to address emotional and spiritual aspects for the rest who are overwhelmed with what happened. In the end, after the food has been served, the physical wounds treated, a more subtle wound will need healing.


"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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Tinker

I'm glad you are safe Joel. I hope you don't mind. I posted a note on my Facebook page to promote donations to the Red Cross Philippines Relief Fund and included your poem as "written by my poet friend Joel Josel who lives in the Philippines". I've already heard back from a couple of my friends who say they donated after reading the post with your poem.

 

~~Tink


~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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JoelJosol

Oh, thank you very much, Tink. We need all the help we can get at this time.


"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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dr_con

Moving, powerful. The revision is pitch perfect. I am very grateful that you are ok!

 

Juris


Join the Voodoo rEvolution. Classes forming now: http://www.integralvoodoo.org/

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Benjamin

A most apt and well toned piece. I wish you and your family well. Your corner of the world is particularly vulnerable to such disasters and I sincerely hope the country receives all the help and support it clearly needs from those of us who are more fortunate. Benjamin

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JoelJosol

Thanks, Juris and Benjamin, for the read.

Hopefully, the help finally reaches everyone, including those in the isolated areas of the disaster area.


"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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David W. Parsley

Powerful piece indeed, Joel. What passion and imagery, balance of line! It's only a nit, but I believe the word in that last line should be "overrun."

 

Best,

- Dave

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JoelJosol

Oh, Dave. Thanks for the catch.


"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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JoelJosol

I had been listening to Bruce Springsteen's "City of Ruins". And I thought the poetry in that song is so powerful in its simplicity and imagery. The song could have been written for our countrymen as well.


"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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