Sunday, June 15, 2008

Worldstorm, Pt. II

I raise my head above the fictional waters of Rats for an instant, and learn that my other home town, Iowa City, is suffering through the second 500-year-flood in fifteen years. My friends and their families are apparently safe, but there is only one bridge left in service over the Iowa River. In Cedar Rapids, 27 miles to the north, 400 city blocks are underwater. 

The walk I used to take from my house in the Brookland Park neighborhood, across the Burlington St. Bridge, through a corner of the  University of Iowa and to the downtown hobby shop, where Dungeons & Dragons miscellanea could be had (or at least craved) is blocked by a river gone mad and walls of sandbags.

Once again, I'm writing about this not because I think what touches my life is unusual, but precisely because it is not. This storm is everywhere, and it is wounding us far more than carbon limits ever could, and we may be confident that it will not simply go away until we find the will to stop feeding it. To paraphrase Loren Eisley: there is nowhere to hide; there is only a place to start from. 

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