On the Return of Joy and the Flood.

When all was lost. When we wept. When there was nothing else to do but wait. In the midst of misfortune, you can stand on rooftops, waving desperately to the incoming helicopters as the flood sets in, clutching all you have left, and still lose everything you hold dear. You cannot hold joy as close as you can pots and pans, mattress rafts and makeshift floats. After the storm and the Astrodome, concrete crumbling façade and sewage-filled streets, to return home to an old address now nothing more than matchsticks is a loss as deep as the ocean.

After such sorrow as the sweeping away of all you have toiled for under the sun, you cannot begin again as you have before. Such toils change you. You will not build near the levees again, nor trust the wetlands to absorb the storm. But after the flare and crash of lightning for so long, you can sleep to its sound. Now, to be safe is to know that there is calm in the eye of the hurricane. After such a cacophony of sorrow, joy is silent thunder.

© 2015 Anna-Christina Betekhtin, All Rights Reserved.


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