This afternoon when i was feeling better about my schoolwork situation i almost posted "i teeter between tired and really really tired... i've got a vision of blue sky and dry land," but anything cryptic sounding is gonna be read as about WTC and so i didn't.
After reading someone's post about patriotic clothing i realized i was wearing blue jeans and a red shirt. I usually try not to wear whatever the colour(s) du jour is/are, but i wasn't even thinking when i picked out clean, weather-appropriate clothing this morning.
Yesterday Sarah Newby posted an Alison Bechdel cartoon and i started feeling weary because every time 9/11 comes up, the administrative reactions thereto come up as well, and i have issues with those, but they're almost always different issues from those around me (because i have issues on both sides) and i just....
I wasn't going to post anything, because i have nothing to say. No one cares what my story of the day was, i have nothing profound to say, i didn't lose anyone, etc. But working on rewriting my column the second song that came up on my random playlist was Dar's "This Was Pompeii" which is not about 9/11 (it came out in 1996) but i started crying
And everyone has memories of the night that melted stone,and really, what i do is go through what other people have said and post the bits that resonate with me, so that's what i'm doing. My father sent me links to a lot of interesting articles, and i may post them tomorrow, but the moment i'm in right now... i don't want to debate all the political issues, so the only blog i pulled up was Lileks.
The neighbor's nightgown, the screaming on the phone,
And the tired man at the station says, "We can't tell who's alive"
The world will not end. It will roll around in its orbit until Sol expires of famine or indigestion. In the end we’re all ash anyway - but even as ash, we matter. The picture at the top of this page is a sliver taken from a 9/11 camera feed. It’s the cloud that rolled through lower Manhatttan when the towers fell. Paper, steel, furniture, plastic, people. The man who took the picture inhaled the dust of the dead. Somewhere lodged in the lung of a New Yorker is an atom that once belonged to a man who went to work two years ago and never came back. His widow dreads today, because people will be coming and calling, and she’ll have to insist that she’s okay. It's hard but last year was harder. The kids will be sad and distant, but they take their cues from her, and they sense that it's hard - but that last year was harder. But what really kills her, really really kills her, is knowing that the youngest one doesn’t remember daddy at all anymore. And she's the one who has his eyes.Yes, i cried again.
Reading TBQ's post earlier, her referencing Anya from "The Body" almost made me cry. Reading it again while preparing this entry... i really loved what she emphasized. It's the kind of tribute i want to incorporate into my mental/spiritual space.
She says, "This year I'm not mourning. Not because it isn't sad, but because mourning isn't a stage I can stay in."
She talks about two mothers who both each lost a son in the attack and how one of them spent time every day at her son's grave and wanted to build a memorial and how the second woman said "that she knew that pain, she sympathized, but that this was not the way to go. Her son wouldn't want to be remembered for dying in 9-11. He'd want to be remembered for who he was."
I don't want to stay focused on the moment of horror. I don't want to stay locked in that day of Hell. That's not what we're meant to focus on, I don't think.And she ends by quoting Jon Stewart, who may well have THE best quote regarding the day.
Not forget it. It is obnoxiously redunant and obvious to say "never forget". It is impossible to forget. Forgetting is not the problem.
It's what we do with what we know.
I've got three nieces. One who was alive - and in Manhattan - when the Towers were struck. Two who weren't even born yet. As time goes on, I may have more, or even kids of my own.
And I figure at some point they're going to ask me about 9-11. They're going to want to know what it was like, and what we took away from it.
And I'm going to tell them: we took away greatness. We took away the knowledge - the fact - that deep down humanity has goodness. That when push comes to shove we can forget our bullshit, petty squabbling and stop giving a shit about the little details because in the big picture, the important one, we remember that we're all in this together.
What's 9-11? It's firefighters and brave civilians. It's blood donations and piles of clothing. It's those who died, and those who lived.
The view from my apartment was the World Trade Center and now it's gone. They attacked it. This symbol of American ingenuity and strength and labor and imagination and commerce and it is gone. But you know what the view is now? The Statue of Liberty. The view from the south of Manhattan is now the Statue of Liberty. You can't beat that.
(And okay, i just read what TBQ wrote before the one-year anniversary and i'm crying again and i'm going to go pray some and then finish my column and go to bed.)