Psalm of Janet
The Day the Towers Fell"
My sister Linda was spared
September 11th 2001
a day that will live in infamy…infamy
Dial 9-1-1, for 1 + 1 = 2
She works, (she worked)
for Marsh & McLennan, in North Tower 1
on the 96th floor of the World Trade Center
And she should have been there, that day
she should have been there
should have been there at
her normal time, 8:45 a.m.
She was not
=(pause and think calmly on that)
I walked through the Port Authority that morning
a strange premonition hanging…in the air
as if everything slowed down….
"THE TIME IS NOW: 7:54 a.m.”
Words, just words against the board, but…
Strange, jumping out, as if to grab
I continued walking downtown to catch the E
a subway voice "IT IS NOW: 8:10” rises from a passing car
a passing thought, a Scripture brought to mind
“today is the day of salvation"
We were all underwater
And then at work…
the news…the family calls…
there was no way
Linda was alive
for the Tower was hit, target-direct...hit
The 2nd Tower…
fallen, Babylon fallen
(and we didn’t
which tower she was in….)
But then the cell call to Deb
I’m ok…I'm on the Jersey side… "
and the heavens themselves collapse
I run to tell my mother
(for she was there…)
"She's ok…she's ok…she's…."
alive and I'm shrieking
like a balloon
TIME IS NOW
and my sister
Thank you God, thank you
she was only…two stops
away, she was only……
ten minutes away
The Age of Technology… connected we are
Those off-site were beeped and Linda as well
cell to cell, (deep calling deep)…moments after the crash
"We are here, twelve of us, waiting…to be rescued”
And again, "We are trapped in the conference room"
and the last, "Fire and smoke…love you"
Tower two) Tower one….
GET DOWN - INTO THE GROUND
THE TITANIC IS SINKING
OUT of the flame
visions on shore standing…
a life-line is thrown
but it hits you in the face
AND YOU REALIZE THAT
a horror show, a video
replayed over & over
A wet blanket wrapping around your neck, a cord of death
we sit with our sister, she sits with her list
on the phone, calls pouring in, CEO's, husbands, wives
"Have you seen so and so…are they on the list!!!???"
a Holocaust set in stone
CRASH!!! An explosion
"Why did the plane have to hit Marsh!!??
Her coffee-buddy- Elaine –right there
sat there, Northeast window - the plane's nose
(did she look up???)
And it was budget week at Marsh...and all were to be in early, and many
but many were not, did not make it in
that day….for they were spared
The Lord spared them
For a reason!!!!??? Yes, for a reason
And Linda's numb face, looks out.....
"Dolores was always in at 8, she was always in at 8."
your friends, your livelihood, your routine, your papers, your
bills (even her
in a moment, in a flash….gone
out?? Oh, can’t they dig faster?
Can't they work harder? Where IS God!!!????
Why do you hate….so
Why do you work through this mass of heaping humanity….
Who gave you the right!!!!?? Did we??? (Do we?)
like children laughing
monsters lurk and we do not see, or notice
that anything is amiss
Hatred feeds upon its chosen, and we look up, surprised
pretending as if, we have played no part
are in denial
Lady Liberty, speak to me
Dear Freedom, bring me words of comfort
strange words of comfort
You say: “Give
me your tired, your poor,
your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
the wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me…
I lift my lamp…beside
the golden door!"
how can you love like this, Freedom?
How can you stand, while I sink in mire?
Undone I am, undone…yet….
I too must rise
in time, a monument eternal
What is your life?
the pearls you are holding
are they not also…meaningless?
too shall pass…”
the poets say
Well, what are we living for then?
are we doing?
We are mortal yet immortal
in a moment of questioning
What the hell have we been
trusting in this whole time?
(my question becomes….personal)
where will you spend…Eternity?”
Bad things cannot
always be explained
hurts the soul to try
from underneath this pile I will lift
my voice, still, to cry
towering tears, I am spinning
trapped beneath rubble
Ancient of Days
you saved my sister…that
and I believe I am
returning to you
concerned I am, you see
about the condition
of my soul
the towers in my heart
have fallen, my soul is longing
to be near you….
And only time will tell
I am yearning for
assurance, on my knees…
insurance from my needs
Confessing the darkness within
Save me now Lord
So I can go on…so I can grow on
“Today is the Day of Salvation”