Tag Archives: victim

Victims

In the perfect stillness, in the quiet,
over the waste, beyond the silence,
you move. Movement is everywhere:
through the smoke, through the noise,
past the barriers and into the chaos,
to this very day.

You, you innocents,
you are in your perfection, perfect,
and will remain that way forever,
of this there is no doubt—
even after we have long forgot you.

We have too many mass-murder victims. And because their lives are cut short so unexpectedly, to those left behind to grieve, their memories of their loved ones may always be caught up in, and constantly looping through, those last dreadful moments. But to us bystanders, as the years slip by, the truth is we just forget them as people. We may invoke their memories on each anniversary or when the topic arises, but only as a collected identity: the victims of that day’s terrible events. We do not remember them as individuals, ones who had lives and loves and hopes and fears and plans, and who deserve to be remembered that way, not as justification or explanation for what ensued thereafter.

Recently, I reviewed and archived all my poems on the Book of Pain. Some, I realized, were really two poems in one, this being one such. Originally entitled To this very day, that poem was eventually renamed 9/11/2001, the name whereby the other portion of the original still goes by.

The photograph was taken on a trip to Pompeii, Italy. To see my photography blog, please visit the Book of Bokeh.

john

Photograph, poem and notes © John Etheridge; all rights reserved. The poem and accompanying notes are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. This applies to all original written work found on this site, unless noted otherwise. The attribution claimed under the license is: © John Etheridge,  https://bookofpain.wordpress.com. The photograph is not licensed for use in any way without the expressed consent of its creator.

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Straight for the heart

A big old door with a new, little latch:
the delusion of security
under the ugly of reality,
such is life.
If you sit behind a door, afraid,
you’ve already been beaten.
Buy a gun and be done with it.

I am no gun-toting, “a pistol in every hand and an AK-47 in your underwear” supporter. I loathe all guns of all types and all eras—pistols, rifles, and phasers—almost as much as I loathe the violence-prone society that we have become and from whence such implements of destruction come.

My point is, don’t be a victim. And don’t especially be an emotional victim. Fearing for your safety in domestic disputes is an ugly reality that all too many women, children, men (yes, men) and elders live with. But putting a small latch with four small screws on an old door frame does not buy security, it gives you the delusion of security. If you really live in fear, be realistically and fully committed to a workable protection plan. And whatever that plan is, be ready with it, be ready to implement it, implement it when it is necessary and don’t look back afterward with any regrets.

Thank you for reading Straight for the heart. I sincerely hope you have enjoyed it and I humbly appreciate your visiting the Book of Pain. As always, I look forward to your comments.

john

© 2013 by John Etheridge; all rights reserved. This poem and accompanying notes are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. This applies to all original work found on this site, unless noted otherwise. The attribution claimed under the license is: © 2013 by John Etheridge, https://bookofpain.wordpress.com.

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