Poems On 9/11

Eyewear asked poets to send their poems for this grim anniversary.  Here are a few below.

The Nowhere Inn
Boycott, I think it was, scored
a century and secured England
from defeat. We lost the trail
of celebration in The Nowhere Inn.
Two boys, underage, necking lager
and playing, over and over, 'Geno'
on the jukebox. Falklands-bound,
Devonport sailors puked on the lino.
Then so did we. On 9/11,
Edward missed his usual train.

- Tom Phillips

When Freedom Stands

Babies are born and lovers lie;
We’ll make plans, when Freedom stands.
Do not let their stories die.

We teach the how, perhaps the why;
Teach to repeat, to ace exams;
Heart and truth would make them cry.

He stayed inside, in search of his brother.
The second plane hit, lens on his mother.

They put on their fire suits, knowing the worst.
They stormed the pilot; called home first.

Some got relief. Some got the wall.
Nine-thousand remains: nothing at all.

Heartbeats skip and minutes fly
Like spy planes with capture plans.
And the dead cannot ask why.

It’s not the oil. Truly, we’ll try.
Allied lands, joining hands—
Empty space in our New York sky.

Babies are born and lovers cry;
We’ll make plans, when Freedom stands.
Do not let their stories lie.
Do not let their stories die.

- Heather Grace Stewart


the dispossessed
murmur your name
in dreams -
do not desert us.


- Tony Lewis Jones

(following Lawrence Wright The Looming Tower, pp 70-71)

Up and
up and
up he climbs.

Following donkeys bearing caterpillars
through Taif’s granite time,

to reverse a caravan trail
55 miles to Mecca’s
contemplative space.

From the mountains
the future highway unwinds
via basalt, stone and sand

and then on
to bind a nation
and unravel modernity.

- Rishi Dastidar


Anonymous said…
Some great poems to commemorate this horrific anniversary.
Poetry Pleases! said…
Dear Todd

There are some interesting poems here. Thanks for sharing.

Best wishes from Simon
Some time ago I wrote this poem about a side-tragedy to 9/11:

(Architect, 1912-1986, designed the World Trade Center Twin Towers)

First big commission: Pruitt-Igoe
high-rise housing, St. Louis, Mo.,
1950s, slum clearance.
Sickly son
of immigrants, he wanted so much
it be human: for whites, blacks, their families,
community-space, gardens, galleries,
places for children to play.

The best of architecture, wrote Vitruvius,
creates firmness, commodity, delight.

It failed. Who knew? Money gave out, commons trashed,
those who could, ran – the rest trapped in prison
run by The Man. By nineteen seventy two it got so bad,
they had to blow it up.