Oh, how we'd like to put this video in slow rewind,
go back to September 10th, refurl the chrysanthemum
of ash to a bud, pull the towers back up
from their soft collapse, harden their sides,
slap cement on with our bare hands, smooth it flat
with a trowel, return the sky to its flawless blue,
no plume of black smoke, just windows glittering
in the September sun, office workers breaking
for coffee and bagels, the world's commerce
humming on. Let the planes remain in their hangars.
Let the men who plan harm get caught in traffic,
misplace their tickets, miss their connections.
Let us all sleep again at night.
Used by permission.
Barbara Crooker's books are Radiance, winner of the 2005 Word Press First Book Award and finalist for the 2006 Paterson Poetry Prize; Line Dance (Word Press, 2008), winner of the 2009 Paterson Award for Excellence in Literature; and More (C&R Press, 2010). Her poems appear in a variety of literary journals and many anthologies, including Good Poems for Hard Times (Penguin, 2006) and Good Poems, American Places (Viking, 2011) -- both edited by Garrison Keillor -- and the Bedford Introduction to Literature.
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