Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Praying for Peshawar

I was sitting in a public office, waiting my turn this morning when I saw the news on TV. Hundreds of lives lost in a school shooting in Peshawar, Pakistan. The images ran into each other as my brain numbed. Children in school uniforms. Caskets stacked against a hospital wall. Parents, searching, hoping. And then a random thought- isn’t this about the same time as that school shooting in Newport, CT? Two short years- almost to the day. Who would do this? Why? What of those left behind? How does someone cope with a loss as great as that of a young child? To me, as a mother, the ache I feel in the pit of my stomach while writing this is a real, physical pain. All I hope is, that my prayers somehow reach the grieving families….All I wish for is, this kind of a thing doesn’t happen again. Ever.  


A day like any other

Rushing feet, excited.
The joy, the chatter,
The clunk of bags and bins.
A friendly shove,
A whispered joke.
Carefree laughter,
That rush of youthful anger,
A gentle breeze,
A pretty young lass.
Silence. Admiration.
A snide remark,
More laughter, threats of teary eyes.
Averted by a teacher’s footsteps.
Safe. A day like any other.

Rushing feet, purposeful.
The hustle, the screams.
Pitter-patter of iron,
Random.  Mindless.
An angry shove,
Boots, blood, agony.
Sounds of Terror,
High pitched, frightening.
Then helpless Silence.
Tiny bodies and souls,
Splattered with senseless hatred.
Strewn along cold corridors of learning,
Abandoned in violence.
A day, etched in violent history.

Rushing feet, searching.
Unbelieving, hoping.
Looking, seeking.
Then shocked Silence.
That tender life, that smile,
The promise of a better future.
Lost Forever.
That battered body,
Unrecognizable, except by a mother’s heart.
Locked up in the wooden box.
Returned to earth. 
Amidst premature, half-hearted goodbyes…
Those tear-filled eyes;
Questioning. Waiting. A day, like no other.