It’s great the way it defies us like this,
keeps us guessing, looking to the sky
As it builds up and tumbles toward us.
We track it on radar as if it were another
incoming bomber or speeding motorist.
We name its most memorable moments:
there’s Katrina and then Irene and Sandy,
name them and blame then, watch their
approach, their progress, and what they
leave behind. It defies us, reminds us,
treats us like children, afraid of thunder,
mythologizing lightning, seeking shelter,
places susceptible to wind damage and
flooding we never see coming our way.
It takes our hiding places away, makes
short work of all our efforts, our houses,
our roads and bridges; even graveyards,
our final resting places, aren’t spared,
are sent downriver with the rest of us.
It’s always with us, whether we want it
to be or not; like today, after days of rain,
it’s hot and humid, gathering its forces,
piling clouds over the lake, ready to make
the afternoon over into what the weatherman
calls occasional showers and the possibility
of localized flooding, much like yesterday
and the day before that, and the day before.
J. K. Durick is a writing teacher at the Community College of Vermont and an online writing tutor. His recent poems have appeared in Decades Review, Northern New England Review, Third Wednesday, and Up the River.