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Poem: It Could Have Been Worse

A poem I wrote on September 11, 2001.

It could have been worse?

It could have been worse
That’s the only consolation I can find.
The other two could have hit the White House
the Capitol, an elementary school,
the statue of our liberty.

Tonight, all of our planes
are accounted for, safely on the ground;
except four planes, their passengers and crews,
totaling more than 260 people.

All of our buildings are intact,
fully functional, operating;
except four, three ramrodded
with some of those more than 260,
one (and who knows how many others damaged,) completely imploded as an aftershock.

All of our people, our friends,
fellow citizens, city workers, and family,
are present, well and accounted for;
except the more than 50,000 people
who were possibly inside one of those 4
upon first strike and/or during collapse.


They’re calling this larger than Pearl Harbor,
possibly the largest number of deaths
on American soil
even larger than our own Civil War’s
largest single battle death toll
in that town of Gettysburg.

And yet my mind is finding refuge in
it could have been worse?

This will take a while to grasp.
Tonight I just want to cry.

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