9/11 Epic poem: Prologue

The September 11th Epic Poem

       By Daniel Schilling © 2010 all rights reserved

PROLOGUE: (The early Anniversaries)  
In mid-September ev’ry year
            When corn is six feet tall,
The days of summer seem secure
            Against the threat of fall.
But in the end the snows descend
            From cloudy winter skies;    
And lakes will freeze when all the trees                            
            Are stripped of their supplies.
 
At least for now there is no plow
            that’s tearing up the land:
The fruits of Earth complete their birth, 
            Received from God’s own hand.     
The farmers dare to gladly share
            With all the neighborhood;
For now at last their fears have passed
            That harvest won’t be good.
 
But while we wait we meditate           
            On mem’ries from the past;
Our minds recall the day we all
            Were altered by the blast.
That date, well known, is etched in stone,
            On far too many tombs;
And ev’ry year these thoughts draw near
            When mid-September looms.   
 
But now’s the time to sip the lime
            And bask in summer’s breath.
It seems so rude when thoughts intrude
            Reminding us of death.
We’d rather not give half a thought
            To all that has been done,
For fear that this might make us miss
            The final days of sun.
 
In days like these before the freeze
            The human heart is full.
The plants we reap will help us keep
            Revival in our soul.
We’ll shuck the corn some breezy morn
            And split the shares in crates;
And when we cease, we’ll taste the peace    
            That fam’ly work creates.
 
And later on when daylight’s gone
            We’ll gather once again,
And take the chance to laugh and dance
            With fam’ly, folk, and friends.
We’ll light the wood that smells so good,
            With tinder crisp and dry;
And all the sparks will swim like sharks
            In oceans of the sky.
 
But is it right to joke all night
            Forgetting what we’ve learned?
When widows weep and still can’t sleep
            For husbands crushed or burned?
We’ll pause, perhaps, amidst some lapse,
            And say a private prayer;
And wish the best for those depressed
            For someone slaughtered there.
 
We all mean well; it’s hard to tell
            The thing to do these days.
We each reflect with great respect,
            But in our diff’rent ways.
Now some will preach and make a speech,
            Or talk about the war;
While others strive to live their lives
            The way they were before.
 
The experts say that dreadful day
            Is better left behind.
They have not found a single ground
            To keep it on the mind.
It’s not correct to introspect
            The things you thought and did,
And most of all there is no call,
            To tell them to your kid.
 
But in our hearts our bolder parts
            Are telling us they’re wrong;
That those who died should live in pride,
            Enshrined in endless song.
They try to keep our souls asleep
            Inside a sterile fence,
But in the end we can’t pretend
            It’s still September Tenth.
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