Any of us who were present for Sept. 11, 2001 have a story of where we were when we either watched or heard the most incredible news: the United States was under attack. In that moment, our lives changed radically and a nation long divided by politics, religion, and economic status was united in response to the senseless deaths of over two thousand nine hundred people.
As I watched the opening of the National 9/11 Memorial and the memorial service on the tenth anniversary of that tragic event, I was moved to tears by the stories of the lives so transformed by that day; the children who lost parents, the mothers who lost sons, etc. I personally did not lose a loved one, but as a member of this nation, I mourned with those who mourned on Sunday. Today I offer this simple poem of my thoughts and emotions as a tribute to those who lost their lives and the families who survived to go on and inspire a nation to hope again.
Smoking building, falling debris;
Chaos crushing, hard to breath,
Lives were sacrificed for thee.
Confusion, terror, loss of peers
Numbness, anguish, mounting fears;
Fury for children’s mourning tears.
Mothers, fathers, daughters, sons,
Husbands, wives, beloved ones;
Love unending, forgetting none.
National mourning, the world responds,
Kings, prime ministers, vagabonds;
None untouched, all undone.
Soaring growth, memorials built,
Some still fight survivor’s guilt
But none give up; seek peace, be still.
Ten years passed, lives renewed,
Children grown, all hearts imbued
To cherished hope they cling unmoved.