But there's still life to be lived. I think of children flying kites in the tent camps in Haiti after the earthquake. I think of smiling boys out for a walk with their dad in waist-high water in Mumbai, a photo I saw in this NPR story about south Asia, where floods have killed over a thousand this summer. And I think of little girls I saw in a photo from Texas, catching tadpoles in the water Hurricane Harvey left behind.
For some reason the flood photos kept making me think of this Stevenson poem I loved as a child and can still almost recite from memory. The dark brown rivers are now running down highways, where they aren't supposed to be, and another disaster becomes part of the memories of children.
Dark brown is the river. Golden is the sand. It flows along for ever, With trees on either hand. Green leaves a-floating, Castles of the foam, Boats of mine a-boating— Where will all come home? On goes the river And out past the mill, Away down the valley, Away down the hill. Away down the river, A hundred miles or more, Other little children Shall bring my boats ashore.
Robert Louis Stevenson