We cried for the heroes, and later their sons

borne by their comrades, covered with flags.

We cried for the mothers and fathers, their children orphaned,

pulled from the rubble, covered with flags.

We cried for the many unseen and unsung

lying alone for months, only pieces for body bags.

The smoke, the flames, the rubble everywhere,

crowds screaming through the streets, bodies falling mid-air.

Shocked faces covered with ghostly dust

are visions we see as we sleep, and, sleep we must.

Three months from that day, much had changed,

widows, orphans and parents left to weep

as wives, mothers, whole families waved

from the shores of the Land of the Free,

their loved ones sent, our freedom to keep.

Daily news from all corners — a continual blur

with conflicting opinions of fantastic events

from countries long shrouded in secrecy and myth.

To most a mysterious religion had come to the fore

with chants and claims of an America they abhor.

Shaken from a complacent mundane drudgery,

a sleeping patriotic energy emerged,

from all ages and groups of an American whole;

a rush to learn more, to come to understand

the seething roots of a burning hatred they see

espoused through a maze of ideologies.

Faces of women cruelly hidden from view,

lessons only learned by the fortunate for few,

bodies swinging for days on a playing field

are images and facts that shocked us anew.

The lens of the world is now poised and focused to see

what will become of camps filled with refugees.

How will the tribes, warlords and egos

of years and years lay a blanket of peace

over graves, mountains, deserts and tears?

Heroes’ values of honor, compassion and love

must be demanded from powerful seats;

from multiple voices from below and above

if this challenge the world together can meet.

Ann Kent 12/11/2001


When I look at the entirety of the events of our current administration, I fear we are failing miserably.


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