Written in memory of those who perished on September 11, 2001


The sky opened its wide jaw
and the day came tumbling out.

Breath. Life everywhere blessed
with this vibrant buzz of breath.

The breath of love, of strength, cheer.
Life praising, innocent breath.

Strong shouldered and soft formed breath.
The foot-pounding-cement breath.

Lover leaving beloved breath;
that breath of soothing mother.

The impatient wait; the sigh
of lost time; expectant breath.

Subway and street crossing breath;
Marble and beam, workday breath.

Life breath cooling the first cup
of coffee, and then a smile.

The sky opened its wide jaw
that day, and our breathing stopped.

@Copyright 2002 TAWhite



  1. I don’t have moving poetry in response to yours, but so appreciate how you offer words with the visuals and emotions created. On September 11, 2001, I learned about the crime underway from radio news and called to wake my daughter, a freshman at college in New York City three blocks from the World Trade Center. She was trapped in her building until later that evening, and as a photographer, took photos of what she saw to observe and keep herself occupied. That was a day of breathing deeply for all of us, as those walking through the rubble found shoes, pocket books and the remains of those who breaths stopped that day.


    1. 9-11 will haunt several generations of Americans. It was a hit on our collective psyches and cannot be undone. Your daughter was so fortunate, Pris but I imagine she must carry a weight that others of us (not in NYC on that day) don’t share.

      Liked by 1 person

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