torn

(3 comments)
November 27, 2001

Images of the Moment
From New Jersey Online, some photos from beneath Ground Zero. Read the captions underneath to see what's going on. The first photo and #8 are the most interesting, I think.

Poem of the Moment
Try to Praise the Mutilated World
Remember June's long days,
and wild strawberries, drops of wine, the dew.
The nettles that methodically overgrow
the abandoned homesteads of exiles.
You must praise the mutilated world.
You watched the stylish yachts and ships;
one of them had a long trip ahead of it,
while salty oblivion awaited others.
You've seen the refugees heading nowhere,
you've heard the executioners sing joyfully.
You should praise the mutilated world.
Remember the moments when we were together
in a white room and the curtain fluttered.
Return in thought to the concert where music flared.
You gathered acorns in the park in autumn
and leaves eddied over the earth's scars.
Praise the mutilated world
and the gray feather a thrush lost,
and the gentle light that strays and vanishes
and returns.
--Adam Zagajewski, Translation by Clare Cavanaugh. I first saw this in an issue of The New Yorker that had a really striking cover, the silhouette of the Twin Towers, but they were only slightly darker than the surrounding darkness. It was really moving. It got some publicity when it came out, but I missed it.