Storms can help remind us of our place in the world.

In the broader scheme of this planet, we are small and young.

And each of us … we are smaller still.

Life brings us storms, both literal and metaphorical.

And with them, a choice.

We can hunker down and ride them out.

Or we can lean in and let them wash over us.

I don’t believe there’s a default best way. Not for me.

Each storm carries a special opportunity at a point in time and space — just for us.

I see it as a chance to tune in to something bigger than us and discover what is true.

This poem I’m sharing today came to me months ago during another storm, one of those tunings in. Until now I’ve introduced it to only a few close friends.


by James Kerti

People arrived from leagues away
to drink my sacred waters and say
the old words their ancestors had spoken.

It feels like just yesterday
they stopped to worship before going on their way,
but the years passed hard, the cycle long broken.

I hear all the gnarled words today:
sewer, filth — their price, but I pay.
In this shattered system I’ve become just a token.

I’ve felt every season, every moon, every day,
each with their own song, since faded to gray,
so still I wait, solemn and oaken.

They knew it was mine, from river to bay,
and though they forget, I still hold much sway.
Even a poisoned goddess can one day be awoken.

About the author

James Kerti

Digital strategist and systems specialist, poet, former basketball scout, technically a politician.

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