Trap Shooting: A Poem for October 2, 2017

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was nine

when I learned the walls of

a school were not impervious

to hate,

or brains sicker even than

my own.

I learned that things could be

weaponized

against one’s own kind.

April 16, 2007-

33 killed,

I was nine.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president was shot,

when the war was won?

 

I was thirteen

when I learned that being

a U.S. official

did not save you from being

a woman.

I learned that

white boys,

when not given what they want,

will take lives.

January 8, 2011-

6 died,

I was thirteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was fourteen

when I learned that interactive media

does not always work the way

you want it.

I learned to look

behind my shoulder

on vacation.

July 20, 2012-

12 dead,

I was fourteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was fifteen

when I learned that even children were not spared.

Instead

they served as baptismal pools

of blood for young men in

despair to be

reborn.

December 14, 2012-

28 murdered,

I was fifteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was fifteen

when I learned that

kin did not matter either.

That boys have rights to play

with their toys, one of which being

our lives.

June 7, 2013-

6 gone,

I was fifteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was sixteen

when I learned being pretty was

a crime too.

That being allowed to say “no”

was a game and I couldn’t

win it.

May 23, 2014-

7 ended,

I was sixteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was seventeen

when I learned you could murder

God, too.

I learned that only some

safe havens are respected,

if only

they are painted the right color.

June 17, 2015-

9 cut off,

I was seventeen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was eighteen

when I learned the pain of

stereotypes coming true.

That there was no reason

or season that protected

from the pain.

December 2, 2015-

16 shot,

I was eighteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was nineteen

when I learned that I could not be

quietly queer.

My love of women,

though less intense than

my feelings for men,

could not remain an

apolitical secret, when joyful love was being killed.

June 12, 2016-

50 erased,

I was nineteen.

 

Where were you

when the towers fell,

when the president died,

when the war was won?

 

I was twenty

when I learned the

truth.

That despite all

this, it will not end.

I am twenty,

last night was

October 1, 2017-

58 buried.

 

So when younger generations

ask me

where I was,

when it fell

when things broke,

when they died,

I can only respond:

Everywhere,

children,

Everywhere.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: