Andrew Hoffman
Wilton Manors

Regarding one of the photographs published in "The Worst Wind": Marie Antoinette said of the hungry, "Let them eat cake," to her great regret. The photo of residents of Florida City lining up for coffee cake shows these desperate people standing in line for "breakfast." Is this the best these so-called organizers could do? Where is a hot breakfast of cereal for nourishment?

It seems the more money that's donated, the less these people get. There are donations right and left -- restaurants on South Beach, synagogues and churches, also. The federal government has now appropriated more than a million dollars, but all these people seem to get is a mediocre handout.

As stated in the article's introduction, "We might consider how one major storm turned a huge American community into a veritable Third World tragedy overnight...or how we managed to prove yet one more time that America is infinitely more adept at mobilizing to kill people than at mobilizing to save them." It's totally ironic and tends toward cynicism how a sitaution like this is organized, or rather, disorganized. The real life and bureaucracy just stinks. And why did President Bush wait so long?

G. Powell
Miami Beach

I'm a newcomer to Miami Beach, having moved here July 1. I managed to survive Hurricane Andrew relatively intact, as did my home and my place of employment. I know I'm luckier than a lot of other people in this area.

Anyway, I wrote this poem the day after "Andy" hit.
Horizontal Rain
It all began with a deadly quiet,
then burst loose like a full-scale riot.
The wind started howling through the trees,
tidal waves arose upon the seas.
The sound of glass shattering,
birds shrieking, instead of chattering.
Fences sailing through the air,
live power lines down everywhere.
Then the deadly horizontal rainlaunched an assault on my windowpane.
The walls were vibrating beneath my hand,
the skies rained debris, and water, and sand.
The sound of little children crying,
animals seeking shelter, palm trees flying.
One candle, burning, is my only light --
will I manage to survive this night?
Surrounded by strangers in an unknown place,
I'd give anything to see a familiar face!
Then dawn arrives, and I sleep at last,
knowing Hurricane Andrew has finally passed.
Teri Sharp
Miami Beach

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