12.31.2010

The Wind in the Heights

it is addressed thusly:
For G. Van Der Leun
it reads:
The wind among the heights that day
Was strong and brisk, and though they say
That old borough is high and dry
This day would make it seem a lie
For once we had heard of the deed
We required of none us to lead
To the promenade's tall edge
To gaze across its towering ledge
And see the city, whole in rout
Its deepest places turned out
To see the fires against the sky
The diving men whose rivers dry
Ran with fire and iron and blood
The blood their own, and dry the mud
Of the street on which they fell
And St. Nicholas' last tolling bell
So with a rumble, horrible and loud
The towers each became a cloud
A darkening soot the sun had dimmed
In fear the people, streets had rimmed
With men as men in terror fled
From the suffocating dread
And we from high and from afar
Thought not of this act of war
But marveled as each smoky band
Formed a darkling titan's hand
And reached across the river to us
And now, we too saw the panic and rush
And ran and squeezed and flew like dust
The coming dark! The rising dusk
Of cloud and gas and fire and ash
Along that narrow sidewalk dash
And barely inter our selves before
The darkness comes in all the more
And look from our own windows there
From front and back, the deadly air
As the dryness turns to rain
As though weeping in her pain
Seeing the glinting bits of men
Who died bravely there within
Gave city breath as from of old
And turned the gray of rain to gold.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous17:07

    A wonderful tribute to the victims of 911. I had watched a video, never seen it before, of those people jumping in freedom and victory rather than die at the hands of foreign terrorists. The traumatic scene of those flattened bodies at the base of towers before their collapse... it brought back the horror of that day a decade ago.

    Roland JOHN Ford

    ReplyDelete

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