Posts Tagged ‘September 11’




This morning, like every morning,

his mother rises with her heart open.

Somehow, overnight, it has healed.

She is not like the paper doll

that, when wrinkled by callousness,

will not ever return to its former shape.

No, somehow the heart not only heals,

it grows bigger—some miracle she cannot

understand. She thinks back

to the day he was born, the day

the towers fell. As she went into labor,

she thought no, not today, no not today,

until some strange grace slipped into her

and spoke the new words,

of course today, of course today.

How beautifully, how forcefully

love insists on itself. How astonishing,

the daily miracle that leads us

again to each other.


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On this night
she tells the story
of eight years ago,
how the boy who was growing
inside of the woman for eight months decided
this day, this September day devoted to singing
and dancing and chanting for peace,
how this day he chose to arrive.
How gold the aspen were on the drive
to the midwife. How blue, how deeply blue
the sky as she curled her toes into the dashboard
and choked between clenchings how she hadn’t thought
it would hurt this much. How she thought, “Not today,
not today, not today, of course today, of course today,
of course.“ How the man sat beside her bed
and held her hand and hummed a one-note tone as she pushed
the new life forth. How the room smelled of lily,
and how she had moaned into the beautiful
violence that split her and crowned the boy,
his dark hair wet, his hands so small.
How the man had caught the boy as he flew
into the air and the terrible light, how he whispered
to her, it’s a boy. How the woman had held the naked weight
on her belly and sang him into the world
with words the trees had given her:

in you swells the breath of the universe
you have a body made of love
in you dwells the spirit of your ancestors
in your life you’ll always have enough

And how eight years later how fine he had grown,
so loving, so beloved, so … oh, she cannot tell
the story anymore through her tears, they are happy
and endless and broken and whole, and they fall to the bed
where the eight year old boy reaches up to hold her.
He wipes her tears with the green
and white blanket he’s slept with since
that September day. He wraps it around
her shoulders and holds her and kisses her forehead
again and again, and no more words are said.

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