After September 11th (Revised from “After”) (R7+ )

After September 11th (revised from “After”)

After,
a little girl carried an umbrella
everyday to the school with the dust,
a hardhat found a restaurant menu
and an unopened package of children’s bibs

After fallen jumper cables,
cables, beams, jumpers, bodies
heat and fire, fallen
firefighters, police, hardhats,
lady’s hat with feathers
pearls

After,
an orphan, a widow, and
for son and daughter
mother and father
friend
the end of them
in dust, in vapor
crushed
everyone

A little girl carries an umbrella to school
on a sunny day, every day —
she is afraid. Once

her mother had taken her home from school
through a crowd of silent strangers in a dust storm
and no one knew what to say, but
she went to her room
to play with her dolls
her mother looking sad, staying silent
more than a moment of silence

and the bells ring
waterfalls collect tears
after

Will an umbrella work
after

hats, scarves, pearls, feathers
war is declared on a pearl

— Douglas Gilbert

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4 thoughts on “After September 11th (Revised from “After”) (R7+ )

  1. Very good, but very sad. So many lives lost that day in such a tragic way. But i suppose for the ones who died that the pain is over. I think it’s the ones who are still alive who suffer the most, like the little girl in your poem…reminded daily of the people they loved that they lost and clutching to things like umbrellas to make them feel better in some way.

    1. Unless of course the spirits of the people who had died are still hurting too. I guess it wouldn’t be a physical pain since their body had passed but pain comes in many more forms than just one that you can feel physically. And a lot of times on those ghost TV shows they talk about tragic events keeping spirits from crossing over…I was thinking about what i said a little while ago and about your other reply on Come Cry With Me…

      1. Yes, it’s very hard to know what the truth really is. I guess when people have their own personal experience they know a little bit more than just being told or hearing a speculation…

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