The siren reaches my ears in a crescendo of wails,
Long before the light splashes against the walls in red and blue pales,
Another possible early morning jolt from sleep,
Through the darkness to check on my wife and child I creep,
Then kiss them gently on their foreheads,
Mother and son curled up together and tucked into the bed,
Into the pre-dawn I slip away,
Without disturbing their slumber, I head out to start my day.
An occasional hint of color bounces off the homes and store fronts,
I’m thankful we’re receding from the brunt,
The high-pitch scream and blinding glare of the passing responder,
On their speedy quest they never wander,
Off to help those in need, those who morning’s luck did lack,
The light and sound fade into the black,
I step into my truck and selfishly hope my journey won’t be delayed,
Pre-coffee, my nerves are already frayed.
Catching hold, I set simple thoughts aside,
I smile in the knowledge that my loved ones are still safely inside,
My heart goes to those who needed aid,
I hope the bus to their sides and the services are quickly conveyed,
I fire the ignition and flick on the lights,
They barely cut through the strangling grip of night’s might,
Again selfishly, to me my thoughts return,
To be back inside, cuddled in bed with my family, I urgently yearn.