Sunday, September 11, 2016

Two Poems for 9/11

Fifteen years after the tragedy of 9/11 we are not as stunned as we were on that day, but our individual lives were changed and our nation's path was altered. Now, fifteen years later we still see hate and violence. Our people are easily swayed during every political cycle to fan the flames of fear: fear of the other, fear of the immigrant, fear of the terrorist. Yet no good decisions are ever made from a position of fear. Such decisions cause us to be constricted. We fear taking the risk of helping another. We fear losing what we claim to be ours. Decisions based upon fear usually lead to more violence.

Finding the Better Angels of our Nature

The times are far from certain, and during uncertain times, it is important to get in touch with the better angels of our nature, as Abraham Lincoln called upon during another uncertain time in our history. Sometimes it is in our brokenness that we can make contact with those better angels. For me, poetry is one way to communicate how we can move on in our brokenness. 

Here are two links to poems that speak to moving on in our times of grief and brokenness. The first is at the Poetry Foundation website. It is a poem by Adam Zagajewski, "Try to Praise the Mutilated World" from Without End: New and Selected Poems . The second is a poem I wrote on the first anniversary of 9/11 and posted here on my blog on the tenth anniversary. Click on the hyperlinks below to read each poem:


Photo: Twin Towers of Light
by Louis Jawitz
(Getty Images)


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