Thursday, October 11, 2012


Slipping and sliding, running and hiding
Ground moving under my feet
Twisting and writhing my body is striving
To stay upright over my feet.

Buildings are crashing, boulders are smashing
Walls groan as they fall in defeat
Hands that are clasping, reaching and grasping
Vanish in pockets of heat.

A car engine’s roaring, the driver ignoring
The ‘g’s that now drag them downhill
Not seeing the appalling, the dust, or folk falling
Or the sights ahead of them still.

Then there is silence no shouting or wailing
As all wait for movements to cease
Holding their breath at the sick smell of death
Such a ghastly example of peace.

Then out of the rubble; the terror; the silence
A movement that beggars belief
The hand of a small child sliding upward to daylight
Starts the cries of joy and relief.

People appearing to a scene all are fearing
Dust washed by the tears on their face
Drag at the boulders or anything over
The injured where they can find trace.

Where strangers now gather a family is born
As all work with one aim alone
To rescue the perishing and care for the dying
And help any others get home.

Wyn Barratt Oct 2012.

* This was the Newcastle earthquake. I was the car driver on the way to the Hospital.


Pam said...

Wyn, you have captured the emotion and drama of those terrifying moments. Exceptional writing!

Wyn Barratt said...

It was surreal, Pam. An experience I will never forget. The commencement was a roaring like a jet taking off, yet the fallings seemed to be in slow motion.