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Poem: 'When the Water Came'

August 04, 2010

James Davidson, Artist (excerpt)

Months before Katrina, I started having dreams
of being in flood water over and over.
They were not bad dreams, not scary,
but in each dream I was chest deep
in water making my way to an exit
or an entrance to higher ground.
A lot of people were helping
each other get together
up to higher ground so
there was no fear.
Then I’d wake up.
Our dreams are so peculiar.
           You’re in a strange place
                     and wonder why you’re there,
but you go along with it.
I had that dream many times.
Started in May and stopped in August.
It never dawned on me
my dreams were telling me
something.  The day we evacuated,
We drove to Memphis.
CNN showed people trying to get up
to the I-10 overpass and I said,
I   just   don’t   believe   it.

I’d had so many of those dreams
and then to see that water
           pouring into the city and all
                      those people stuck there.