Marred Memory of Albert Pike

Marred Memory of Albert Pike
by Jo Helen Murphy

There was no firewood.
What we found was rotten.
It was a cold week for sleeping bags
and the midnight trek to the bathroom.

My mind will neither forget
the hill behind our tent,
nor the crags nor fallen logs
that harried my hunt for fuel.

How far up was twenty feet?
How quickly could I climb,
if I had to,
bearing a babe on my shoulder?

The death list was long,
for Arkansas.
Children swept away
from their mothers’ best efforts.

And I cannot remember
the waterfall
or skipping stones
or Baby Wicket.

All I see is that steep hill
and the rising, rising water.

Written in response to the tragic flooding at Camp Albert Pike, June 11, 2010. Jo originally posted this on, June 12, 2010.


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