“Write a poem about an aspect of a national tragedy that contains:
- no statistics
- no references to other national tragedies
- no newspaper headline references
- no mention of the media, or lack thereof
- a focus on some aspect of the tragedy that no one else talks about much, if at all”.
I wrote about a second-hand story told to me about an act of kindness in the wake of 9/11. This is written in chained lunes. Enjoy.
It happened in Middletown.
It could happen in any steel mill town.
Men and women
And money flies out the window.
Honorable hands that did honorable work
Must find something else honorable
The town teeters on a paper’s edge
As a second wave sure thing -
ARMCO jobs, my man -
Is poised to be buried under a
Third wave tsunami
That could take out
A small town
Mountains blanketed in mist,
The stillness of another world;
A dazzling gem, clutched in tight fingers;
A sublime poetic line,
Poised and shivering underneath
An eraser thumb;
And a land’s native son
Can never go home again.