Japan’s Tragedy – Winds of Death: Nature Claims its Victory

Written by on March 17, 2011 in News with 0 Comments

As with Katrina, Japan’s nightmare is the world’s reminder that there are things we think we can control, but do not.  The investigations will follow and the fingerpointing will begin, but for now, our thoughts and energies should be with the Japanese people and their leaders as they struggle with their personal losses, their financial losses, and their clean-up issues.  They will struggle for awhile to determine the best ways to rebuild their nation and their lives.  First, they must find hope and resolve, so they can mourn with the purpose of moving forward.

The following poem recognizes nature’s power.  Since the industrial age and modernization, we often forget that nature is its own power, and we can’t always control it or its consequences.

Winds of Death

How now shall the living live
with so much life now gone?
Nature moved the water’s edge—
an echo of a rumbling thunder
urging waves to drive asunder
an ancient land to history’s ledge—
illumined by a modern sun
that now becomes invented dawn
glowing upward from the ground,
naked now with walls all gone—
bringing clouds on wispy wind
that burns the skin but makes no sound.


How now shall the living live
with death now floating all around.
We look for faces on the shore
amid the fish and cars and ships,
brought to us by seismic blips
in ways we have not known before.
Nature mocks with every tide;
beaches fill with those who died.
We turn away from the winds,
but see the fires and the clouds,
knowing they can kill the crowds
searching ground, searching sea
for glimpse of life among the dead,
a thousand thoughts in every head.
Nature took what we had made
and we can only wait and see
if life itself now will fade.
The clouds we made are moving now;
we watch the winds so warily:
hearts with hope submerged in dread.
We feel the winds; we see the dead.
We ask ourselves: “What are we now?”
We ask ourselves: “What will we be?”
Our minds benumbed of clarity,
we stumble through the lives we were:
Nature claims its victory.

©Daniel Mark Extrom 2011
All Rights Reserved

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