The Hurricane

In this story, the storm does come, and pass. But amongst the wreckage lies an insincere and performative sense of hope.

the hurricane

By Jacob Yankey

And in my version of the

story, the hurricane actually
does make landfall; wobbling
a bit in the Atlantic, she gains
a little earnest vigor and the ole
girl absolutely
starches the

And it’s the whole thing:

sticky shingles are peeled
off one-by-one from
rooftops while wires from
electrical poles hiss and
jump and contort and purge
white lightning, the reporting
weatherman, wetter than
he’s ever been before, stands
at an angle (trying to fight
against the gusts), someone’s
cat gets sucked into the air
by an updraft – you’ve seen
the movies.

And I live.

But my home is destroyed
and in an interview for national
news I say something
inspirational like, “the storm
may have taken my house, but
never our community” or some other
bullshit like that. Someone
posts about my quote online –
shares a soundbite, shares a video –
suddenly I’m famous,
suddenly people are praying
for me and my family, donating
to the red cross
because of me.

And for only a moment
I am erected in stone –
never dead, never dying –
my immortality lies
in my most sincere
words. I do not
go the way of the
common world.

Jacob Yankey studied chemistry and minored in creative writing with a focus in poetry. He graduated from UNC in 2020 and is a graduate student at the University of Utah as of 2021.