Disaster and fatality have an uncanny way of bringing out the absolute best and worst in the human condition. Just as it drags us to the pits, revealing desperation and even ruthlessness, difficulty can unearth from our depths unexpected kindness and richness in self-expression. Some of the most compelling narratives and works of art come out of the most oppressive circumstances. Everyone has a story to tell, in a way that only they can tell it.

At DNO ,we know that you-Dominicans- are full of stories not just because of the magnitude of what we have been through as a nation, but because of the spirit that existed in our people before the storm. So, we would like to hear these stories and invite you to send in your experience in your own words. It may be commentary , narrative or poetry but it must be relevant to your Maria experience.

Please send all written works and visuals to: news@dominicanewsonline.com

Please keep it to a maximum of 2-3 paragraphs long. If sending images, limit to 2-3 photos.

Thank you. We look forward to reading and publishing your words!

As an example of  what may be done, here is a poem by Hector John, reprinted with his permission:


HEARTLESS MARIA by Hector “Spags” John

Maria decided to go island hopping
and in Dominica first she decided to pop in
We all knew that she was coming in a hurry
But never expected her merciless fury
She placed herself over Dominica
And from there it was licks like fire
Wind and rain from every direction
Running to safety was out of the question
I don’t know who vex this woman
But she was on a destructive mission

Maria gave us a little break
And my door my neighbours slammed with desperate haste
Flickering lights I could see through my window
People moving around to a safe pillow
Then soon after the eye wall came
And Maria was roaring to a murderous refrain
People hearts were in their throats
Like they were on a capsizing boat
I don’t know who vex this woman
But the devastation of Dominica was her master plan

Maria was wicked and savage
And she was on a relentless rampage
Houses swaying from side to side
While zinc sheets flew around like paper kites
Maria was a boomerang shredder
Coconut trees she turned into feather
She kept everybody on their feet
Not even the toilet bowl was a stable seat
I don’t know who vex this woman
But she was blowing a deadly venom

Maria didn’t want to leave
And for hours Dominicans couldn’t breathe
Clocks were stuck in eternity
While she rapidly increase her fatalities
My visiting british cousin was so distressed
That he slept and snored on a half soaked mattress
Maria turned the lush green nature isle
Into a bare and gray rubble pile
I don’t know who vex this woman
But we bruised knees for the end of her

Dominicans welcomed the morning calm
But a mountainous island was flat like their palm
With Maria there was no discrimination
She left us a roofless nation
With nothing to wear and nowhere to sleep
Maria put us into a sudden deep
But if we hold each other’s hand
We will rise again and firmly stand
So let us put all hands on deck
To rebuild our Paradise that Maria wrecked.