Thunderstorm by Omode Jokpeme Joseph

October 25, 2010 3:08 pm

I have been observing;
Season unto season,
Time unto time
The vicissitudes that come to us
Mortals from time to time.

The cloud is pregnant,
Ready to deliver.
Causing a great deal of panic and discomfort.
The clouds hurrying with the wind,
Turning sharply here and there.

Thunder which have been sleeping
Throughout the dry season
Now spitting out fire
And shooting the loudest guns
With the mightiest of bullets in the rainy season.

The wind whistles by with rushing sound
And the trees bend to let it pass.
The clouds are whirling,
Waves rolling onto the beach,
Thunder rumbling in the distance,

The wind whistles by with rushing sound;
The leaves trembles in the breeze,
Man and animals alike
Trembles in the breeze,
Running helter-skelter

For safety and cover
As the rainstorm of life
Takes shape in form of vicissitudes
That come to us mortals
From time to time.

The poem conveys deep reverence for nature. And thunderstorm is a storm with thunder and lightning and usually accompanied with very heavy rain. It is a natural or a usual occurrence or phenomenon in the universe. And thunderstorm is a continue discharge of electricity from the clouds, producing lightning and thunder and generally accompanied with heavy rain.
This is a poem of 30 lines which I wanted in order to capture all that I have been observing over the years. I would have made it a sonnet which I considered but I couldn’t bring all I captured over the years.
Thunderstorm is a normal phenomenon that comes to us mortals from time to time. It has to do with the relationship between man and nature. Season unto season I observed the cloud and time unto time I did likewise. The rainstorm is normal life circumstances and situations that present themselves in various forms in life. And it is not for us to complain when nature is at work but rather to embrace nature and to assist it to accomplish its work.
There is something I observed, and this is when the cloud is pregnant; a lot of dangers attend to it and the degree of its impact eventually, no one can fathom. And also when the cloud is pregnant, a lot of dangers attend to it which causes a great deal of panic and discomfort. Its atmosphere and feelings is total disorder, discomfort, and uneasiness. It also causes turmoil, commotion, and confusion.
The clouds are whirling with strong and aggravated circle-like movement occasioned by strong wind and tossing up things on its tail.
The clouds hurrying with the wind, turning sharply here and there and equally whistling and making such loud noise that tree bend and kowtow to allow the wind to pass by.
Thunderstorms pose significant risks to people and property. Thunderstorms produce a number of dangerous hazards. These include tornadoes, strong winds, hail and flash flooding.
During thunderstorm, thunder rumbles in the distance, waves rolls onto the beach, and the flash that comes with thunderbolt which could blind or hurt people and sometimes it destroys properties and things on its way.
People and animals are running helter-skelter for safety as they tremble in the breeze.

Thunderstorms pose significant risks to people and property. Thunderstorms produce a number of dangerous hazards. These include tornadoes, strong winds, hail and flash flooding. Flash floods are responsible for more fatalities – more than 140 annually – than any other hazard associated with thunderstorms. Another hazard produced by thunderstorms is lightning. The dangers posed by lightning are significant as well.
• Thunderstorms may occur as a single event, in clusters or in lines.
• Some of the most severe thunderstorms are those that occur as a single event affecting a single location for an extended time.
• Thunderstorms typically produce heavy rainfall for a brief period ranging from just a few minutes to an hour.
• Thunderstorms are typically the result of war and humid conditions.
• About 10 percent of all thunderstorms are considered severe which means they may produce hail at least three quarters of an inch in diameter, winds of 58 miles per hour
or higher and tornadoes.
• The unpredictability of lightning increases its risk to people and property.
• Lightning can strike far away from rainfall, occurring as far away as 10 miles.
• Heat lightning refers to lightning that strikes even when the actual thunderstorm is too far away to hear the thunder. Heat lightning strikes are a good indication that a thunderstorm may be moving in your direction.
• Most deaths associated with lightning strikes occur when people are outside in the afternoons or evenings during the summer months.
Before and during a thunderstorm
Knowledge is power and comfort when it comes to dealing with the effects of a thunderstorm. Knowing what to do before and during the storm will go a long way in reducing your risks and enhancing your recovery
If weather officials predict a thunderstorm in your area, do the following:
• Postpone outdoor activities. Get inside a home, building or hard-top car. Even though you could possibly be injured by lightning while in a car, it is much safer than being outside.
• Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
• Shutter windows and secure outside doors. If you do not have shutters, close window blinds, shades or curtains.
• Do not take a shower or bath. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
• Use a corded telephone only for emergencies. Cordless and cellular telephones are safe to use.
• Unplug appliances and other electrical items such as computers. Turn off air conditioners. Power surges from lightning can cause serious damage.
• Keep a battery-powered radio on hand to receive weather updates from local officials.
• Stay away from natural lightning rods such as tall isolated trees in an open area.
• Stay away from hilltops, open fields, the beach and boats on the water.
• Do not seek shelter in isolated sheds of other small structures located in open areas.
• Stay away from anything metal such as tractors and other farm equipment, motorcycles, golf carts, golf clubs and bicycle
During a thunderstorm
If you are caught outside during a thunderstorm, do the following:
• If you are in a forested area, seek shelter in a low area under a thick growth of small trees.
• If you are in an open area, go to a low place such as a ravine or valley. Be on the alert for flash floods.
• If you are on open water, go to land and find shelter immediately.
• If you feel your hair stand on end, this is an indication that lightning is about to strike. If this happens, squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet. Place your hands over your ears and your head between your knees. Make yourself the smallest target possible and minimize your contact with the ground. Do not lie flat on the ground.

Thunderstorm Damage and Impacts
What kinds of damage can they cause?
Many hazardous weather events are associated with thunderstorms. Lightning is responsible for many fires around the world each year, as well as causing deaths when people are struck. Under the right conditions, rainfall from thunderstorms causes flash flooding, which can change small creeks into raging torrents in a matter of minutes, washing away large boulders and most man-made structures. Hail up to the size of softballs damages cars and windows, and kills wildlife caught out in the open. Strong (up to more than 120 mph) straight-line winds associated with thunderstorms knock down trees and power lines. Tornadoes (with winds up to about 300 mph) can destroy all but the best-built man-made structures.
From wreaking havoc on airline schedules to threatening outdoor sporting events, thunderstorms have a big effect on our society.

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