The End of a Storm

It was the morning after a terrifying storm, and we were woken by the telephone in the very early hours. My husband was called in to secure tubes and sheets on scaffold, and to help tidy up the very large gas site, where he has worked for over twenty-seven years. As his car was out of action, he drove mine down the back lanes, with me clinging on in the passenger seat, braking to a halt at broken branches and, once or twice, executing two and three-point turns to find a clear path. We sped down lanes I’d never seen before while the wind buffeted the old beetle.

Once in the car park, he jumped out, and I swapped seats, determined to drive home the safest way, which took me along the seafront. The waves were enormous, and foam drifted across the coast road. It was raining by now, and there was just one dog walker dodging the spray and puddles. I pulled over by the sea wall to listen to the news on the car radio and take a deep breath before heading for home.

wind sucks on grey waves
washing down broken branches
blast of a car horn

Kim M. Russell, 30th March 2020

Walcott Seafront

My poem for dVerse Poets Pub Haibun Monday: Snapshots of Our Lives

I’m hosting this month’s Haibun Monday over at the dVerse Poets Pub, where I’m asking poets to go back into their archives, find an autobiographical poem, write a prose background to it in one to three tight paragraphs, with a bit more detail, and then sum up the poem in a traditional haiku that includes reference to the season.

The poem I chose was from 31st March 2018, entitled ‘Sea Front at 7 a.m.’ That poem was a rewrite of a poem I wrote for NaPoWriMo the year before.

43 thoughts on “The End of a Storm

    1. It did seem like a scary adventure, Bjorn. After experiencing the drive to my husband’s workplace with my heart in my mouth, I tried not to show how terrified I was, so when I got to the coast road, I needed to exhale and tremble for a bit, while looking at the massive waves.

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  1. You took me there. I love going to watch the gigantic waves during storms, here on the west coast of Canada, so I resonated with the tree branches being down, as well as the wave action.

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  2. You took me there. I love going to watch the gigantic waves during storms, here on the west coast of Canada, so I resonated with the tree branches being down, as well as the wave action.

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    1. It was exciting but also terrifying as branches were still falling and there were lots of trees, whichever route my husband took. He thought I was a sissy for taking the long route back. 😉

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  3. I’ve just read your poem about your husband as hunter-gatherer, and now here he is as super-hero! He sounds like a keeper😉 Seriously – this is so vivid, I can taste the pressure, and the haiku is great.

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    1. Thank you, Sarah! He is very special, although at the moment he is sad. An old friend and the bassist in his band died over the weekend. We don;t know how. He wants to go to the funeral, but that won’t be possible under the circumstances.

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      1. Thank you, Sarah. I was reading comments on Twitter earlier and so many people are losing family and friends, can’t be with them, and can’t grieve properly, This virus is so cruel.

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  4. How creative of you to get three uses out of one poem. Imagine the ride you’d have taken after the last couple of hurricanes. Excellent illustration of how to rock the prompt.

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  5. What a harrowing experience told with excellent details. The haiku is perfect to complement the prose. The blast of the car horn interrupts savagely the weather and the experience. I was right there with you!

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    1. Thanks so much, Dwight! I’ve been reading about and watching news of such wonderful people, all doing their bit, and feel useless sitting here in self-isolation. But then I remember that I am doing something by not spreading the virus.

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  6. Wow, I was in the car with you hanging on the the door handle! That was intense Kim as was the storm. It reminded me of those crazy people who stand on the beach waiting for the hurricane to come after they have been told to evacuate. The sea is like a magnet sometimes. I really enjoyed your reworked poem too. It beautifully described the angry sea.

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    1. Thank you, Sascha. I’m afraid I was one of those people – I stood on the dunes in the middle of a spring tide storm 27 years ago. It was the first time I’d seen one after moving from London to the Norfolk coast. Awesome!

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