Wednesday, September 13, 2006

151. Five Whole Days (After Hurricane Katrina)

by James L. O'Connor - Dallas, Texas

Five whole days we had five big breaks
The kind that turned our streets into lakes
Mother, father, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, son and daughter
had to break through their attics to escape the rising water

Five whole days we've been in near 100 degree heat
with no running water and hardly anything to eat
No lights, no phone, no motor car. Not a single luxury
Like Robinson Cruisoe as primative as can be

Five whole days we heard babies crying
then at every turn we saw people dying
Ain't took a bath, brushed our teeth nor our hair
everyday wore the same clothes and the same underwear.

Five whole days we fussed and cussed
it even brought out the worst in us
There were whites who were shooting
at Blacks they claimed to be looting
But when they do the same thing, it's called "surviving"
Who the %?..@ they think they fooling?

Five whole days we were catching hell all around
all of these choppers flying, not one of them came down
We've seen army trucks and air boats come around our hood
They had no food or water to give and that ain't good

Five whole days many of us from this city
believe that the rich elites had been trying to get Blacks out since
the 1960's
For years they said the levees couldn't hold up to this
yet, they were waiting for them to break. It's no wonder we're pissed

Five whole days, how long will it take
for us to hear horror stories about children getting raped
The Convention Center was a mess. The Superdome was a death trap
All of the crime in the old St. Thomas and Desire Projects couldn't
touch that

Five whole days were days that shouldn't have been
Our leaders were clueless and didn't know where to begin
It's been forty years since Betsy when my sister had drowned
And, after all this time, there was no clear plan when Katrina came

Five whole days were the worst five days
Something shoulda been set up in the first five days
All of those busses and trains, boats and planes
They were left to sit through strong winds and heavy rains

When we were evacuated after those five days of madness
We went through a lot of pain, suffering, grief and sadness
Everything we had was washed away and destroyed
This was one disaster that was hard to avoid

After those five days, we were just about everywhere
But our families were separated and we can't find them anywhere
We don't know where they are, we don't know if they had survived
we're just hoping to see or hear from them again and we prayed that
they have not died

Many of us got good news, others bad
Some of us were happy, while others were sad
We tried to call by cell phone and other means of communication
trying to keep in touch after all of this death and devastation

Five whole days was a learning experience
letting us know right there and then
never to put your faith in an arrogant and clueless government
or those who claimed to be your friend

If anything, we must thank God (Allah, Jehovah or any other divine
name) that we're here today
Even though Katrina came in and took our homes, cars and lives away
Everything we had is gone, except our spirits
and it's ringing louder and stronger than any hardcore rap lyric

While we are trying to rebuild our lives for the better
We should take time out to pray for those who are still trying to get
their lives together
The Lord is our savior and to him we should pray
and thank him for getting us through those Five Whole Days

Hellicane category: SURVIVORS' Tales


Anonymous said...

Great poem I loved it...5 whole days, I hear ya friend

Andrell said...

Great Poem J.L.
Your RamFam For Lyfe,