Four days after the eight year old boy
Who came to watch his dad run a very long race
And his sister lost her limb
Chaos is our companion.
Spring is ripe.
Daffodils thick along the banks of the Charles
Bright yellow as the police vests on every corner
The merry-go-round glistens in the Common
Opposite the encampment of army fatigues and Humvees
Sirens float on the breeze like birdsong.
We snuggle in solidarity.
We walk carefully
We call our loved ones
‘Stay safe’ is our salutation of choice
We buy molasses cookies for a buck to support One Fund relief
Comfort food for a discomforting time
Were people so angry one hundred, one thousand years ago?
Did they fantasize about killing indiscriminately?
Or are we humans becoming less stable, less sane?
It hardly matters
Killing was harder then.
No easy bombs available to ignite a flash of hate into such tragedy
We have suspects, two young men
Compiled from human and digital witnesses
Ethnic immigrants ten years in Cambridge
High schooled with my own children, who recall them vaguely
Four days after the bombs explode
Investigation reaches a head
The suspects stir, we pursue
Car chases, hijackings, cop killed, store robbed, one boy dead
Entire city clamped down
We breathe shallow, each in our own house, peering timidly at the grey streets
Cop cars sweep through every five minutes
Helicopters hang overhead
Hours pass, the city grows restless but only officials move
Second bomber found, wounded, arrested alive
City bursts with joy and celebration
The ordeal is past
A bizarre feat to celebrate, but we need it
Boston’s been remarkable.
The speed of response, the medical care, the citizenry’s patience
Champions under pressure
We hold our head high among the pantheon of place-named terror.
Columbine, Oklahoma City, Newtown
I fantasize about running the marathon next year.
We all do.
To show that we can
To demonstrate that terror will not stop us