September 11, 2006
The day has been so politicized, the consequences so damaging to us as a nation, it has become almost gauche to talk about it. Especially here in New York. But if you don't have to look very hard to see reminders of it everywhere. Cheap Chinese restaurants always have a poster or two. Middle Eastern restaurants do them one better with a poster and a flag. And of course there are the memorials... at every fire station and at seemingly random spots all around the city. On the promenade here in Brooklyn tourists invariably scrunch up their faces trying imagine where the buildings stood and how high they rose. I still see holes in the sky. The unpunctuated skyline is still foreign. But I don't think about the buildings much, I remember my friend who was on the 103rd floor who didn't have a chance. Sometimes I imagine her jumping...one of those tiny tragic figures etched in our memory. Perhaps that is my perverse wish: that she did jump and in jumping she was able make a final choice about her destiny and maybe in the long moments of terror that followed there was some flicker of hope, a primal dream of flight, that sustained her as she fell through the firmament to face whatever it is that comes next.