September 11, Keeping It Quiet
That the sun rises on another day is not only inevitable, sometimes it is a miracle.
Ten years ago today the sun dropped from a bright blue New York sky, sinking into an abyss of confusion and incomprehension. The raw grief, too much for a number of any, multiplied into numbers of many. Weeks of funerals. Forever for the missing.
We all of us, wherever we were in the world at that tick of the clock, have our stories to tell. For some, the world order changed forever. Mercifully, while the tragic event certainly changed our family plans, we had no need to make funeral arrangements. As such, I have no desire to furnish run-away anecdotal details of how near, yet so far, from the atrocities we were but for a simple availability of dates in the diary.
We are away from NYC this week-end, sitting by the fire as the evening chill settles on a September day in this green and pleasant land that is England. Media coverage pops up on the TV and we change the channel, leaving the pundits to pontificate on the legacy of the new world order which remains a work in progress.
Ten years ago today, I had yet to visit the New York where my husband had started work not many weeks before with me staying in London with the boys at crucial stages of their education. We were to commute for the short-term.
Ten years later, the struggle to make sense of the tragedy continues. Memories of my first visit to New York when Ground Zero was a burning hole in the ground are not far away. Fenced off and barricaded, a no-go zone but for the rescue workers and the families who formed lines with special passes to a place they had no wish to be but for the nearness of their missing dearests.
The American Airlines crew, so many empty seats, so many missing crew.
The Pipe Bands in full dress outside the wide open doors of St Patrick’s Cathedral with their farewell for fallen rescue workers.
The pleas for the missing, the “have you seen?” flyers, wrapping corner blocks.
The sun, shining on a Sunday in October in Central Park, a park crawling with people for the first time since . . . that day for which there are no words.
The quiet padding a way amidst the chaos.
The sense that there was no place I’d rather be.
And in the years from then until now and always, the memorials of that September morning of endless sunshine – candles, flowers and photos, on the walls of fire stations, in flower boxes on the sidewalks outside apartment blocks all over side streets criss-crossing the streets of the loved and the missing.
A day of mourning. A morning when always the sun will shine and certain memories live forever. That’s what love does. It lives forever so that we will never forget.
Friends and family. Grateful forever, wherever we are .
I want to leave a comment, but don’t know what to say. Thinking of you, and of all my US buddies. x
Thank you Gaynor for kind thought and best wishes. Silence, as awkward as it might be, is sometimes the most comforting.
I have purposefully avoided reading any 9/11 remembrances today. I know what I feel and that it isn’t anything that millions of others aren’t feeling, too. Besides, I’m an emotional wreck already and don’t need anything else to add to that. But.
This was perfect. Thanks for sharing your perspective and I’m so glad I read it. I especially love that last photo.
It was such a difficult post – do I, or don’t I say anything? What to say when running away, like you avoiding it all. Here’s hoping your emotional wreckage finds safe haven soon!
The list of senseless tragedies that every country and every population has suffered is endless. All we can do is honor the dead, remember the past and do out best not to repeat. But we will, as we always have.
As Joni Mitchell reminds us, we’re captured on the carousel of time . . .
It was a tragedy that we will never forget. And for as long as there is love and breathe in us we’ll continue to remember, to offer prayers, to keep their memory alive and forever in our thoughts. Sometimes there would be no words to describe the feeling of loss for the victim’s family. You’re right, love is what keeping everyone together, it’s what gives all of us the stenght to accept and go on. Thanks for the tribute. The world prayed once again as one heart and mind.
Thank you IT, and in all the memories and thoughts invoked at this time I so hope to see troops home soon. All best wishes and hopes, one day at a time . . .
This is a beautifully written piece and I’m so glad I read it. I too have been avoiding reading 911 remembrances but yours touched me deeply. 911 remains a reminder to us all that we are never safe from religious zealots and their misguided agendas. Memories and love bind us and hope is our beacon.
TiTi, I could cry with the memories of religious zealotry and bigotry. Memories, love and hope have become a “mental workout” in keeping the flames of that beacon afire. . . thank you.
“an abyss of confusion” – yes it was …
Indeed. Thank you for your visit.
What a beautiful reflection on a horrific event that changed us all. Thank you for eloquently capturing bits of what so many feel about 9/11.
To say thank you does not say enough for what your very thoughtful and touching comment means to me.
Beautifully treated. And I do so much admire how you come into that place called Love —
something that is a necessity, but seems often to be impossible.
Thank you so much T2T. That something so simple should be seen as impossible! That one day quiet, thoughtful purpose achieves that possibility.
Reading this a while after the mass coverage the ten year anniversary received, I find it all the more affecting. It’s a beautifully written piece; very moving. The second photograph is stunning (I haven’t seen one quite like it before) – both inexpressibly sad because a reminder of all those who will not see another New York morning, but also evoking a sense of hope and continuity.
And without hope there is only despair, don’t you think? That one little word has to work so hard. . . Thank you BH for your most generous comment.