This Too Shall Pass

Storm over Saigon, July 2015. (Photo from
Storm over Saigon, July 2015. (Photo from

“I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.” – Little Women

Just before I moved home from Vietnam I was having dinner in Phu My Hung when a storm started tearing through the district. It ripped the cutlery off the tables and the branches out of the trees. Everyone was panicking and shouting and, for a moment, I felt like Dorothy in Kansas: half terrified and half excited by the potential of the destruction it might wreak. I wrote this poem today for a good friend with the image of that storm in my mind.

Emily x

Rider Of The Storm

You are more than what you feel today.

For now, put on your raincoat.
Zip it tight under your chin.
Pull on your galoshes
and begin
to step outside.

Let the rain sheet down
but tell it  you don’t care.
You hear but won’t feel it.
You’re safe in here
inside your raincoat.

Pass the warm coffee shops.
Feel not shame but pride
that you’re braving the storm
while others huddle inside.

Don’t despair that – for now –
you can’t feel the warm.
Keep on walking
and believe
that you’ll outlive the storm.

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