12 September 2012

I Remember

I remember sitting in my eighth grade classroom. Someone came to the door and whispered a message to the teacher. I can't remember how they announced it to us. The next recollection is of all of us turned in our chairs to watch a tiny TV screen at the back of the classroom. I didn't know exactly where my dad worked, but I knew it was in the vicinity of the World Trade Center. I remember the panic slowly building in my chest. I don't remember getting home afterward. I don't remember watching the news about the 9/11 attacks. But the memory of that fear still brings tears to my eyes as I write this. I remember the relief when I learned my dad was okay.

Now that another September 11th has passed us by, I think it's safe to say that we haven't yet lost the horror of that day, even though it happened 11 years ago. And I hope that even the generations who didn't experience the tragedy will remember it through stories and news reports and photos. All of those things are painful, but I think we need them to throw salt in the wound so that it won't heal up, lest we forget. My heart goes out to everyone who lost someone.

I wish that everyone in the world could just exist in peace.

11 September 2012

Brighton Beach in August

The sand doesn't get hot until noon.
We spread our sheet in a spot still
untouched by human bodies.

I don't want sunblock; you don't
want sunburn, but it's still too early
for even the brightest star to be fully awake.

We swim like tangled jellyfish. We try
to propel ourselves forward as one
entity, drifting farther toward the deep.

I can't stand out there; don't carry me,
don't carry me out, I beg and plead
so you go it alone and I watch.

But now I feel like a starfish
waiting to grow back an arm.