What bubbles to the surface after the flood

Posted: January 13, 2011 in Events, Writing
Tags: ,

I don’t know if it has rained for forty days and forty nights, but I do know that we could have counted the sunny days of this summer on the fingers of our hands.

Yesterday, the sun shone with an eerie calm, while Brisbane braced itself for the arrival of flood waters from the west.

Today, the skies have darkened again, and our little pocket of Brisbane is trapped in a bubble of unreality.

Our homes are bounded by the fast-flowing caramel of Enoggera and Ithaca Creeks.

Bike paths are cut, playing fields submerged, our yards, saturated and squelching beneath our feet. But our homes are high and dry, while only a couple of kilometres away, the serpentine Brisbane River has invaded more than sixty suburbs, two thousand streets, forty thousand properties.

We have been spared, but we grieve for those who have been lost. The toddler torn from her mother’s arms. The parents who pushed their children through a manhole to safety before being swept away. The eight year old boy who begged rescuers to save his little brother, before he too was lost.

We who’ve been spared, venture to the river’s bloated edge, and return, shocked by the carnage, moved by the reverent silence of the onlookers.

We look into the swirling brown waters and see the grief and terror of the dead, the dispossessed, and the homeless. We see, but for the grace of God, ourselves.

We are grateful to have been spared. Now we are looking for ways to help those not so fortunate. Click here to donate to the Queensland flood relief appeal if you can.

Video: Floating in the flood.

  1. jason nahrung says:

    Glad you’re doing okay, Chris … heartaching stuff …

  2. chrisbongers says:

    Yes, it is terrible, Jason. But people are rebuilding, reopening and cleaning up. Amazing resilience and spirit being displayed throughout the city.

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