Sunday, September 11, 2011


"...I've seen
a lot of people pass, or die, as you might say,
from one thing or another, including my mother,
in a way that seemed unfair and certainly
unnecessary and arbitrary and cruel[...]
But what death isn't?
Those I remember that were no surprise,
though devastating anyway in their
Is that why now it's life I'm obsessed with?
Or is that because when I watched
the second plane crash into the second tower on TV
a thin blue tube hung from my urethra,
attached to a clear plastic bag, the remnant of a
cancer operation the week before,
unaware an old friend was on that flight,
at that moment incinerated,
a woman who was kind to me when
she didn't need to be?
How many people have died
before you got the chance to tell them what you meant to?"

—Michael Lally (from "March 18, 2003")


Miles said...

Nice one dad. Ron (Cooper's dad) shared this poem with me yesterday.

Nye approaches from a different angle but examines a similar thread (response to loss). Her last stanza, and your last line both resonate especially deeply for me.

Miles said...

Oops, I referred to the last stanza of Nye's poem in my comment, but the link I provided is printed without any breaks, I was looking at it online somewhere else (but chose the Almanac's link thinking it more reputable).

Anyway, I was trying to highlight the part that begins with the line "Then it is only kindess that makes sense anymore", and now that I'm looking so closely at it, I realize that line matters most to me.

Lally said...

Thanks so much son for your kind words and for the link to the Nye poem and the wonderful lines you direct us to. I'm so grateful to have such a kind child and to have known that ever since you were born,

Ina said...

Your last lines give me a lot to think about. Good poem.

-K- said...

For some reason, this -

"...a woman who was kind to me when
she didn't need to be.."

is the the line I always think of first when I think of this poem.

Jamie Rose said...

so powerful Lals. Thanks for posting.