Monday, 12 September 2011

World Trade Center

They fell straight down.  A slow breath out.  The nation held its breath. The New York smell lingered for weeks.  Ten years later still a memory.  We remember Chris playing defense on soccer fields.  Gone.  His wife and children know memory in pictures, video, the sound of his voice, his laugh.  Soldiers in countries filled with pale brown earth now gone, too.

We will show their names when their pictures
are available  –

TV shows the family picture before faces and limbs were splattered by bullets, IEDs.  And no pictures or names of those bedridden in hospitals or homes, without legs, arms, working brains.  Without jobs.  No pictures of those not American either.
 
Around 4 Million Afghans face unemployment

nearly ten years later. Crops of poppies grown by Afghan men, they dodge bullets.  The pile of war dollars – even taller than the world trade centers – spent.  Gone.  Papers floated downtown while the holes grew that day, but no-one would read them.

Five more NATO soldiers killed in Kabul

a headline forgotten by afternoon. Soldiers have memories of dust storms in Iraq and deep blinding snow in Afghan mountains.  They picture their partners in dirt.  Cars park and people walk where smashed dust was.  Chris’s name is on the memorial plaque at Ground Zero.

             More than one million people dead and gone.

© Lavinia Kumar

After a decade of war, the west is weak and in retreat
Editor's note: This is the first prose poem we've published, so it's worth remembering, we will consider poetry in any form. Lavinia tells us, "...somehow, it came out that way." We're pleased it did.
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Lavinia Kumar lives in New Jersey. Her family includes a variety of cultures and immigrants. Her poetry has appeared in Waterways, Thatchwork (Delaware Valley Poets), Orbis, US1 Worksheets, and more.

2 comments:

  1. Beautifully expressed. I've felt uncomfortable about the massive TV coverage of 9/11 this weekend in terms of the human suffering but very little on the political aspects. Has no-one tried to make a programme trying to understand the depth of the hate that brought about the attack and how the foreign policies of the west fuelled that hate? Not in any way to excuse the inexcusable but to try and understand?

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  2. This is great. It captures the kaleidoscopic nature of the news on the day and the feelings after. I like the way it compares the soldiers with the ordinary folks who have caught up in the last decade.

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