Home to the French Quarter, Bourbon Street, Mardi Gras, & JazzFest, a city rich with tradition, art, and culture, now drowned. How does one write about losing an entire city? The number dead is impossible to count. Rescuers cannot even begin collecting bodies as they float past. New Orleans is being evacuated. Many have lost all of their possessions and pets. Several of the city’s websites aren’t opening, I’m sure, because servers are underwater or due to power loss.
The laments are too numerous and complex for me to validly speculate on. At the moment, I can only say that my thoughts and prayers are with the people of New Orleans today and will continue to be with them in the aftermath and clean-up.
If you happen to live close enough, you can view NOLA Weblog’s calls for help and assistance here.
If you are a poet in need from that region, neighbors are offering to reach out to you. Click here. And here. A firsthand report comes from poet, Camille Martin, about her own hurried evacuation and losses. Consider donating books to her and other poets once relief efforts begin.
Also, donations are now being accepted by the Red Cross for the residents of New Orleans.
The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau is attempting to organize and keep locals up-to-date here.
Amy King is the recipient of the 2015 Winner of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA) Award. Her latest collection, The Missing Museum, is a winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. She co-edited with Heidi Lynn Staples the anthology Big Energy Poets of the Anthropocene: When Ecopoets Think Climate Change. She also co-edits the anthology series, Bettering American Poetry, and is a professor of creative writing at SUNY Nassau Community College.