Monday, September 10, 2012

Time Past and Time Future

It doesn't really matter if we awaken to a cool, grey mist that morning or to azure skies scattered with cottonball clouds. The day still hurts. And it haunts. I used to think that it was somehow more appropriate when the morning of September 11th arrived with rain and drear. It's not that the drizzle takes the edge off of the pain or shrouds the memories, but in being so completely opposite of the morning in question there is, perhaps, a small amount of comfort to be taken.

That Tuesday morning was so brilliantly sunny. Too sunny. I walked to the 72nd street subway with a spring in my step. Autumn's first crisp breezes were starting to make their way into Manhattan that day and it was beyond beautiful. And then it wasn't. It was chaos and smoke and sirens and fear. The fear slowly but surely turned to disbelief, horror, and then stunning, overwhelming sorrow.

The twin towers of the WTC, taken from the Brooklyn Bridge, Labor Day weekend, 2001.
And so it is once again Tuesday, September 11th. This year there will be copious sunshine and refreshing breezes escorting the summer heat away from the Northeast. There will be silences, bells, moments, observations, and ceremonies. We will each remember in our own way, marking the hours, noting the time, and allowing ourselves to feel the sadness. Each year I wonder if this will be the one, the year when the anniversary hurts a little less. It never is.

I was reminded of T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets over the weekend, and this small fragment from Burnt Norton caught me:

Time past and time future
Allow but a little consciousness.
To be conscious is not to be in time
But only in time can the moment in the rose-garden,
The moment in the arbour where the rain beat,
The moment in the draughty church at smokefall
Be remembered; involved with past and future.
Only through time time is conquered.


ourmaizcay said...

Michele - I read your post this morning & wanted to say something but didn't know right words - we each hold onto our own memories of day.

My thoughts are to all those affected by this day.

Sid fernando said...

I felt that, too