Its going to be eleven years since September 11 2001 tomorrow and I cant help but think about how the sky was so blue that morning only to be scarred forever by a thick line of smoke.
People left in a rush to get to their jobs – leaving behind loved ones, homes and half-filled cups of coffee. Leaving behind a million empty spaces – empty chairs in dining rooms, empty sides of beds, empty apartments or homes, closets full of clothing and hearts left hollow and forced to beat alone.
A million dreams were disrupted that morning – dreams of love and loving, dreams of playing and winning, simple dreams of just coming home.
Dark rain fell from the sky suddenly – as if tears from heaven. But heaven was closed that day and all we were left with were the ashes from the brimstone’s from hell.
In the name of someone’s god people were burned and crushed alive. Incinerated and cast upon the wind – love, hatred, anger and smiles.
Parents lost children, children lost parents, friends lost friends, loves lost – but never destroyed.
The subways stopped running, Broadway’s lights were switched off – candle light vigils people playing guitars and holding hands. Love triumphs evil – we know that – but the pain was too overwhelming for us to see straight.
Cars drove and people walked as if in a trance; pictures of the lost were posted across the city with hope that somehow, someway someone would recognize the smile, or the hair and point them out in the crowd, safe…but the pictures faded as the hopes turned to sorrow and empty caskets were lowered into the ground.
As a New Yorker – I notice each plane since that day. Wondering if its going too fast or flying to low.
As a New Yorker being told to report anything suspicious and to be vigilant – I smile, knowing that all who perished that morning would smile as well. Suspicious in New York?
I remember the “First responders” and how many of them just kept climbing and climbing the stairs to try and save whoever they could. The courage, the sense of duty…
There are so many stories of courage and love for the victims and the survivors. I remember the story of Abraham Zelmanowitz who stayed with his friend who was a paraplegic and could not leave – even imploring his friend’s full time nurse to save herself and then staying even though he knew he would die – because he didn’t want to leave his friend alone.
There is nothing poetic about that morning and nothing poetic about the pain and the suffering that followed. We were in shock when the sun actually rose the next morning but that night was long.
The world was shaken that day – an earthquake of hatred and evil which shook all that is good and true – only to be reminded that the foundations of good, the foundations of truth and the foundations of love are unbreakable.
No building can ever restore what was lost that day – but no destruction can ever take away what keeps the human spirit going. Someone asked me, “How did all those people keep going on with their lives after losing so much and being reminded about it day after day?”
I had no answer so I asked someone and they told me matter of factually – “Love.” I didn’t understand it fully at the time – but as time went on and I experienced loss – I understood.