In October 2001, my husband and I went to New York City on a trip we had planned long before 9/11. We were drawn to Ground Zero, where there were photos of missing persons everywhere, along with flowers and makeshift crosses. You could walk right up to the edge of the craters where the World Trade Centre towers were. There was only a flimsy fence. Smoke was still rising and it was eerily silent as we and scores of other people just stared.
We have gone back to the site every year since then. Gradually, it was impossible to see anything because large fences were erected. Professional photos replaced the personal ones. The building of the memorial seemed a mammoth undertaking that took forever.
On May 15 of this year, Jay and I went again. It was the week before the official opening, so only families were allowed into the building. We stood at the edge of the memorial fountains. The water disappears into nothingness. The names of all who perished are carved into the stone at the perimeter of each fountain. It is beautiful in its simplicity, if beautiful can be said in the same sentence as death.
RIP to all who died – including the firemen and other helpers. Terror and war continues and may we all pray for peace in whatever custom we use to tap into the spirit of goodness and our human conceptions of the divine.
The photo in this post was taken from the Internet as I did not take any photos in October 2001. It is the fence surrounding St. Paul’s Cathedral, which is next door to Ground Zero.