Battered, flooded, toppled, windblown

Marooned, dusted, drenched,

Abandoned, deserted, voiceless, stunned.

(Getty Images)

A world for a moment still.

Then rise, limping, bleeding,

Eyes filled with dust, standing uncertain on shifting earth —


Where are the mothers, brothers, sisters, fathers?

Is that light?  A voice?


Hardhats, plastic buckets, hands held skyward.

Blankets, make-shift beds, hands in prayer,

A million water bottles scattered.

We have stood on these piles before,

The places we have fallen.

Oklahoma City, trade centers, Mosul, Miami, New Orleans, Washington.

Houston, Rockport, Detroit, Montgomery, Paris, London, Madrid, Mexico City.


What we build will fall.

Lessons in the rubble, flashing floods, the muddy destruction.


There might be a cry, a whimper, a tapping.


What we do to hate is crushed.

What we do for love rises.

About michaelstephendaigle

I have been writing most of my life. I am the author of the award-winning Frank Nagler Mystery series. "The Swamps of Jersey (2014); "A Game Called Dead" (2016) -- a Runner-Up in the 2016 Shelf Unbound Indie Author Contest; and "The Weight of Living" (2017) -- First Place winner for Mysteries in the Royal Dragonfly Book Awards Contest.
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