The Tragedy of Dots

Williamsburg, Virginia – In Bush Gardens, there is a roller coaster named Apollo’s Chariot about which this poem is written. This poem is also written in memory of those who were forced to jump on 9/11/2001.


I watched as America woke again

From another light-bulb moment, then shifted

To thinking about myself

On top of Apollo, facing down,

About to fall in an unnatural angle. 

.

Had there been concrete instead of the swamp below me,

I would have hurled my breath inward,

Deep.  I would have assumed my demise. 

.

I walked through the same linen-covered door that day,

Skies as blue as heaven-sent.  Although it seemed that all I did

Was watch an awful tragedy of dots:

Before them, their unlimited futures;

Behind them

Hell.  On TV,

Debris: hundreds of feet

Of sheets of metal, twisting;

And their minds opened wide

As they fell down the line of the sky. 

.

I stared in suspended judgment

At the indifference between the dots and the debris.

Staring straight ahead, then

Facing down,

Then, light-headed.

Then, passed out before I hit the ground.

.

time-cover-9-11-2001
Time Cover

I woke from my blackout,

The swamp behind me now,

Absorbing sparks from my chariot’s underside.

No fire. No falling man, horror-bound.

No body parts in every grate.

No billowing grays of lifeless hate.

.

I was still in clear, blue sky.

But them?  Those dots?

They were alive.

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