Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Poetic Asides April Challenge Day 18 prompt "Like_____________"

Like Confetti, Pieces of Souls Rained Down

I thought I would have to visit it-
Ground Zero – so close – how could I not?
Once nearer though, I grew disenchanted
With the notion, decided I would not go after all

Quite by accident, I stumbled close to the site
Lost—again—on the Metro—surfaced, to get                                                                                                                   
My bearings; an elderly man urged me closer
With his cane, asked me – was I looking for it,
“the place”?

“No, no,” I protested, sounding weak and indecisive
In my own ears – hadn’t I come up less than a block
From the memorial? The old guy’s eyes glinted
In the sun as he stared at me, then said softly

“You wanna set a bit?” he patted the bench
Beside him and suddenly weary, I slid down
Resting my head on my overlarge suitcase
Smiling gratefully at him as he smiled back

“It was a purty day, much like this one, y’know—”
My bench-mate spoke so softly I had to strain
To hear him and it was unclear if he was
Speaking to me or just mumbling to himself

“Sky as clear as this until, like confetti, pieces
Of souls rained down ...” I felt drops hit my hand
And in wonder, touched the wetness –
Then looked into his tear-filled eyes, felt my own

Sting, as he continued, “Imagine – I was passed
Out that whole day long, didn’t wake up ‘til late
Afternoon when everything was changed – them
Big ol’ towers were crumbled to dust and all those

Poor people—” We sat there in silence then,
Me, trying to imagine how that must have been
For him, and him, patting my hand, trying —
I don’t know what he was trying to do but whatever

It was, it worked: when I walked away from him
I felt revived in a way I’d hadn’t expected
Funny, but NYC’s always been kind to me that way ...


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