Poem after September 11, 2001

Of whose pain shall I speak -- yours, or mine,
Or untold souls’, known and unknown?
And whose fear is this, unrecognizable?
I cower before its grotesque stare.

Nullified reason gives no compass here,
Even love can't map this alien scape.
And what of hope, and hearts' desires–
Shall despair hereafter obscure them, too?

Cruel evil without spawns evil within,
As merciless as its unholy parent.
Hiding from ourselves, we turn to each other,
Shielding our eyes from what we might see.

Terrified and ashamed, alone and dissociate,
Unfairly abandoned by adulterous Nature
Whose vile persona today emerged
To sever our future from its innocent past,

I stand bereft, a fair-weather friend,
With nil to offer save insufficient words,
Aspiring only to displace for one moment
The sadness and horror that now permeates.

A hollow gift, perhaps, but this I swear,
Fail not to look inside, the truth is there.


  Copyright © Jay Keller 2001-2011, all rights reserved

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