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Incident on I-59

Tim Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson - Premium MemberPremium Member Send Soup Mail Go to Poets Blog Block poet from commenting on your poetry

Below is the poem entitled Incident on I-59 which was written by poet Tim Ryerson. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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Incident on I-59

Headed home from a business trip
Tired, spaced out, grouchy and impatient
Pushing the limit to beat rush hour traffic
Fast closing on an old jalopy van

Suddenly blue smoke and debris flying
The back tire must have bounced twenty feet up
My first thought…’Stay STRAIGHT, you bastard!
Careening violently left, it flipped many times
(Several objects were ejected from the doors)
My next thought..."This is NOT my problem!"
"DAMN!" Slam on the brakes at the last second
Then it hit me. I was the first on the scene...

I would guess it took a full minute to cross over
Cars whizzing and blowing by in both lanes
Obviously it was not their problem either...
(Someone else has stopped, they'll handle it!
Besides, there's a game coming on tonight) 
I waved my arms, screaming curses and pointing…

A woman was lying near the wreckage,
wailing in robotic, shock induced screams
Left arm beneath her back with her right arm
twisted at a bizarre and unnatural angle

One man was thrown at least twenty feet off
(Ironically, he seemed the least injured)
He kept trying to get up for some reason
I rushed over and asked him to stay down
"Okay, but the baby!...Where is the baby?"
('A baby, you mean there's a BABY??')
"Yes, our BABY...Please go find our baby!"
(‘Oh no, dear God please, no...no')

The median was a wide, steep-banked grassy ditch
The van was tilted slightly sideways on its roof
Legs rubbery and trembling, stomach churning,
sweat streaming and stinging blurry eyes,
I staggered over to the wreckage, knelt down
and peered through the passenger side window
 
Empty… (‘Oh no, dear God, please, no…no’)
Stumbling around back and then alongside,
scanning the grass and then around front
I almost tripped over it. There he was
Maybe five feet from the bumper he sat upright
still tucked safely away in his baby seat
kicking and cooing, giggling and drooling,
obviously having a wonderful time

I collapsed to my knees, bowed my head down
and feverishly began to unbuckle him
but quickly thought better, fearing unseen injury
Instead, I took his head gently with both hands,
kissed his forehead and nuzzled against his neck
(Babies have that particular scent, you know)
I recall glancing upward to clear blue skies,
muttering and mumbling incoherent thanks...

For Charlotte’s contest






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  1. Date: 1/11/2014 12:18:00 AM

    Enjoyed the write and congratulations on the win, Tim

  1. Date: 1/10/2014 11:28:00 PM

    Tim, .congratulations.... If you'd like take a trip to my blog ----> ON THE ROCKS------ http://www.poetrysoup.com/poetry_blogs/blog_detail.aspx?BlogID=18527&PoetID=18720 <---- enjoy if you'd like... Love Always & Forever <3 LINDA <3

  1. Date: 12/4/2013 8:57:00 AM

    Tim - Gripping and inspiring. I often think when stuck in a line of cars how God might have spared me from an accident ahead. I can't begin to thank "you" when I rolled over 3 times on the Mass pike. love, Kathy

  1. Date: 11/20/2013 8:13:00 PM

    Interesting poem Tim, , Congratulations on your win..always.. ~xox~ LINDA

  1. Date: 11/18/2013 7:27:00 PM

    hahaha I did not know I did that. It must be for your like political views with him!!! heehee

  1. Date: 11/18/2013 4:31:00 PM

    hey, I just read your response to my comment below. You called me Nettie! that's ok though. I mess up names all the time!

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 11:03:00 PM

    oh wow...i don't know if this was fact or fiction but it had my attention...you have crafted this piece brilliantly...congrats on your win :)

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 2:51:00 PM

    I loved this write you had me right from the start to the end. Thrilling write it was great thank you for the thrill ride in poet form. cheri

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 2:13:00 PM

    Wow!!!! This felt so real. I am in awe Tim. I have no doubt this will beon top of the leader board. I am putting it in my favorites.

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 1:02:00 PM

    Tim---Such a beautiful story of what happened that day...certainly keeps the reader interested in what you are saying! Loved the ending especially! Congrats on your win in the contest....much deserved! Julie ;-)

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 7:54:00 AM

    nice , congrats on your win.

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 6:51:00 AM

    Tim...God uses people in mysterious ways...you my friend are an angel...amazing how many people give up being blessed by not taking the opportunity...that child you held in your hands was special...I believe

  1. Date: 11/16/2013 6:32:00 AM

    What a gripping account . It could not have been more well-expressed..Congrats to you ,my friend, thnx for stopping by!!

  1. Date: 11/15/2013 7:35:00 PM

    Yikes!!!! [But I always knew, just from your face, you ARE a hero] The act was your win cher, the actions of a true man, a true heart, a kind soul. Congrad's on your win Light & Love

  1. Date: 11/15/2013 5:45:00 PM

    this one gripped me from first line to last; a very modern piece, I liked the gritty realism and the unusual touch of putting your thought processes in brackets throughout - congrats on your win in my contest, tim! :)

  1. Date: 11/13/2013 9:13:00 AM

    Wow, amazing writing as each line builds anxiety for what is happening. You covered every aspect from just wanting to get home to being caught up in a whirlwind in a spit second. Well done :)

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 8:24:00 PM

    This is so intense, if this is a true story, you must have been real shaken by this, thank you for sharing you're story, xxx

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 4:26:00 PM

    and now your poem: OMG, what a story this is!!! It's incredible and well told, Craig. now for some bad news. If this is the contest I am thinking of, doesn't the poem have to be less than 16 lines or something?? Maybe I got that wrong. I hope so, because this is a winner!!

    Ryerson Avatar Tim Ryerson Date: 11/12/2013 5:28:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    Thanks for the comment Nettie!...Regards, Craig
  1. Date: 11/12/2013 4:24:00 PM

    first I wanted to tell you, when I lay on the Salt Lake, I still sank. I do not know how to lie on top of any type of water without sinking!!! haha

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 3:14:00 PM

    Wow........what an incredible account of being witness, and being there at such a miracle moment as this. Amazing story Tim.....an angel was watching over that child. We too, watched a rollover accident on California's I-5, a car and trailer RV rolled over several times, down an embankment. First on the scene, we were calm, and helped until emergency help arrived.... once we were allowed back on the freeway, my knees couldn't stop shaking for an hour afterwards. Adrenaline is an amazing force

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 3:13:00 PM

    This is a wonderful and powerful read Tim. I read every word, and enjoyed all of it. I really hope it is a win for you...Peter

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 10:40:00 AM

    Tim this is absolutely a powerful and exquisite write you penned here for Charlotte's contest luv. Winning wishes. Thanks for stopping by my work today. We must keep in touch. Hugs and love, Gail

  1. Date: 11/12/2013 3:55:00 AM

    Now you've really outdone yourself, Tim. I'm sitting here all goosebumpey and misty-eyed. What a touching story. You're sure to do well in the contest. Good luck, my friend. Licia :-)