Tuesday, March 18, 2014


March 25th 2011

Red ink on white
the Cornell website's list
of victims,
not blood on cloth, but
names, ages.
I have known the stories,
the numbers,
one hundred forty six dead,
too many to imagine.
Reading now for research’s sake
I'd tried to distance myself,
but my heart falters.
I read my own name:
Sixteen years old.
Suddenly these girls are more
than names on a list
more than digital ink.
I picture myself at sixteen:
unable to tame Italian curls,
Papa telling me the stories
his Italian Mama told him.
Perhaps she knew those same stories.
Perhaps she too fought
with her brother,
but loved him all the same.
Who might she have been,
I wonder. What dreams did she hold
in her heart,
and what prayers did she think

as she leaped?

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