That Christmas Eve in 1953 when a lahar swept down the Whangaehu River from Ruapehu’s crater lake, carrying away a train packed with people and presents. 151 people were killed that night, including the engineer and the fireman.
sadness of the water swirling
across the battered rocks and buttresses
where nothing remains
but the memories
of a Christmas that never was
and some who never made it home
(Ironically Tangiwai in Maori means weeping water)