The storm came in the morning
A day that had begun as any other
Became a day nobody would forget.
Ice spread through our veins
Teeth began to chatter
Seeking comfort in the sleep-intoxicated pink cheeks
And tousled hair of our children,
A promise that something in the world
Was still perfectly right.
Fear, indignation, bile rising in our throats
Stomachs leadened, sickened
We stared, wooden
At the screen that once delivered talking turtles
And rainbows to squealing children.
Desperate to stop the flow of information
That we could not fit inside our minds
Physically unable to remove it from our eyes
Lest the threat spread to our own backyard
And we are caught unaware.
Involuntarily flinching at the sudden sound
Of any engine
People flocked to fill them
Less for the prayer or blessings
More for the sense of unity,
A hand to hold.
Stricken faces in our mirrors
We wished for sleep,
For no other reason than to avoid the truth
We spoke in whispers
Just in case
The volume of our every day voices
Could somehow draw the evil
To our own door.
This one day; for weeks, months after
We are a nation of One
Tragedy, The Great Equalizer
Color, religion, income
We are just part of “Us”
And we are against “Them”
We stand together;
We feel tainted,
Unable to return to the innocence
We once enjoyed.
We are different people now
Yet still wary.
A constant reminder
Of the collapse
Of two mighty mountains.