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Midnight in Udall Kansas

Story ID:6941
Written by:Monte Leon Manka (bio, contact, other stories)
Organization:retired
Story type:Poem
Location:Hemet CA. USA.
Year:1955
Person:Chelsea Kansas Kid
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Midnight in Udall Kansas

Midnight in Udall Kansas

Midnight in Udall Kansas

Midnight in Udall Kansas

Midnight in Udall, Kansas

We decided to take a ride
Several miles south west of El Dorado
To Udall, Kansas
Where there had been a tornado.

Shirley and I remember that day
In 1955, the 25 of May
The little town of Udall, Kansas
Was almost completely blown away

We had no idea what we would see
But as we drove down
We witnessed the total devastation
Of this little town.

Homes were flattened
Cars stacked up against trees
Roofs gone
Refrigerator parts in the streets.

As we drove along we saw
A heavy cast Iron School Bell
Off the roadway lying in the dirt
Sitting upright resting on its skirt.

I saw a crow walking on the ground
With one feather in his tail
He wouldn’t last long
Some hungry cat would make him his meal

Huge trees twisted like pretzels
Concrete foundations bare
The house that stood on it yesterday
Was no longer there

One of the first Kansas Highway Patrolman
To arrive up on the scene
Said he could not have made it
If he could have seen outside his flashlight beam

Almost Midnight
Death and destruction everywhere
What this Patrolman saw, that night
How could any man be prepared?

As we drove home
The conversation was quietly spoken
Feeling compassion for those citizens
For their Hopes and dreams that were broken?

Monte L. Manka 03-08-11