Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Ground Zero Poem: Hotel Room View
Frances Shani Parker
Like many others, I felt compelled to visit Ground Zero in New York City after the September 11, 2001 terrorists’ attacks on the World Trade Center. I requested a hotel room with a view overlooking the excavation. An aura of heartache permeated the air, while numerous memorial displays comforted those who sought healing. After taking this picture, I wrote these poetic reflections:
Scattered images of causalities,
thousands of love notes
blanket a former battlefield.
flowered tributes coax
closure of doors left ajar by trauma.
From my hotel window, I watch
the Ground Zero real-time movie
of a 21st century grave excavation
where the World Trade Center
stood and fell, a kindling target
for terrorists’ fires.
Hills with human remains
transport like treasures
to a Staten Island landfill.
Conveyor trucks beep
warning chants of danger
to a world in global doom denial.
I view the sixteen-acre hole
in the heart of a grieving nation,
listen to victims’ voices
share their haunting horror:
“We fought to live and love
trapped in a fatal inferno,
marooned in a tomb of ruins.
We nursed at the breast of fear
until our spirits were free.”
© 2002 Frances Shani Parker
From Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes
Frances Shani Parker, Author
Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes is available in paperback and e-book editions at many booksellers in America and other countries.