September 11, 2013

Reflecting Absence

Parker and I visited the World Trade Center site this past summer during our trip to NYC. It was a hot and humid Tuesday morning during a heat wave in July. Nonetheless, the 16 acre memorial was littered with devoted spectators whose hushed reverence seemed to drown out the clamor of the bustling city.

“Reflecting Absence” is a memorial comprised of a field of trees—one particular tree being the only thing left standing in the wake of that day—interrupted by footprints of the Twin Towers which are represented by cascading pools fed by continuous streams of water, surrounded by the names of the victims. 

This memorial is now a place where generations will go to remember and pay tribute to those who were lost, but will never be forgotten.

Like many, I will always remember where I was that fateful day and the feelings of sadness and terror that came over me as life, and somehow freedom, seemed to be ripped from our nation’s grasp in an instance. The loss was inordinate and unwarranted, and for many the pain still exists.

Though tragic and heartbreaking the loss, I left the memorial that day reminded that courage and strength to persevere through the tragedies of life are fueled by a precious gift called hope, which perches in the soul and keeps us warm . . . never asking a thing in return.

By Emily Dickinson

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune--without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

1 comment:

  1. It's truly a beautiful memorial - but a reminder of a huge lost. I pass by it often and I always feel that sinking feeling. I cannot believe it's been 12 years.

    The Word of A Nerd