In the early aftermath of whatever struck you about 9/11, the life math itself action replayed mind-numbingly. The body count, the bangs through the buildings, and the private and public aches of a stunned America. And the united colors of breathless TV studios. Shedding nationalistic heat on a moment that may have needed some light and a balm instead.
One had to take a deep breath and find other ways of seeing.
At that time, much of the poetry I read vacillated between American school assignments in cathartic mode to quick-fire book-length poems; all of them, of course, having their own coming-to-terms story. And then there was Wislawa Szymborksa's poem PHOTOGRAPH FROM SEPTEMBER 11.
'They jumped from the burning floors—
one, two, a few more,
The photograph halted them in life,
and now keeps them
above the earth toward the earth..'
Wislawa Szymborksa. I did not know this Polish 1996 Nobel Laureate until then. She had continued to study underground duringRead More »from 9/11 in verse