9.11.2007

Six Years Ago

Mr. O'Kitten took all of these photographs on 9/11/01 and in the days following. He gave me permission to share them with you.





We stood silently at the riverside a block from our apartment and watched. The tower melted to the ground like a candle, but all speeded up, and with a horrifying rumble like something within the bowels of the earth was very, very angry.


A little later: Everything was gone. The world was silent, and everyone was walking the streets in a daze. We tried to give blood, but the hospital wasn't ready to accept blood donors yet (there was quite a long line, too). Others were busy gathering in downtown parks, building dozens upon dozens of stretchers that no one knew then wouldn't be needed. We all wanted to help, to do something, to serve in one way or another. Probably the worst part of all was that there was next to nothing that could be done.


Posters for the missing were everywhere. Thousands of notes, flyers, and posters...every place you can think of.


So were teddy bears and flowers and signs and American flags and yellow ribbons and sidewalk drawings and stuffed animals and rosary beads and photos and drawings and notes from children and letters from family and friends and lovers and candles. There were candles everywhere.













Am I still standing? Some days I'm not sure.

Today we lit a candle. I guess that means I am.

10 comments:

- jesse said...

Yeah, I think I am being overwhelmed by anniversaries between this and Katrina. It makes my heart hurt.

I remember all those posters and then in the next months, the smoke from the WTC blowing into my bedroom window in Queens and waking up crying...the American flags everywhere and suddenly the American Hate. My coworkers saying that their Buddhist neighbors *finally* put up an American flag and should remember where they are...and they BETTER. And whatnot.

I don't know which part was sadder. The actual tragedy or everyone's attitudes afterward.

Mouse said...

I was up in the mountains of Colorado with no tv or radio and a 2 month old baby when this happened - my husband called me on the phone to tell me what was going on and none of it made sense. I remembered being both horrified and terrified at the same time.
Mr. O'Kitten's photos are amazing.. but frightening at the same time.

ros said...

:: hug ::
now i go back to self-medication in the form of brie & bread & wine & cigarettes. i am definitely not strong enough to quit smoking on a day like today, and i applaud you for making it through today without lighting up m'dear.

Becky said...

Remember that people love you, Shannah, and we miss you when you're not there. See you Saturday.

Puss-in-Boots said...

How's it going, Mrs O'K? You sound a little low...still I guess it's to be expected with the anniversary. You lived rather close to it all at that time.

Keep up the good work...you doin' good, kiddo!

mrspao said...

Bless you for sharing those photos with us. I am so glad to know you and have had the opportunity to spend time in such a special city.

Joanie said...

Everybody will remember where they were and what they were doing. It has changed America, it has changed our world. Those of us who live in NY or NJ then and now will never forget. We are reminded every day in one way or another.
God Bless America
We love you...

roxtarchic said...

i waited for four hours to give blood at bellevue... and it's amazing how many movies you see (i think it was moonstruck the other night) and they're there... and i instinctively gasp, then hold my breathe for a second and (in the past week especially) cry....

Chris said...

Thanks for sharing those pictures. You reminded me that I really needed to listen to "An American Tune," both the original and as covered by the Indigo Girls. It was very powerful for me back in September of 2001.

Gattina said...

This day has changed a lot even in the rest of the world !
How terrible it was !