Casualties of War

Casualties of War

Father screams for his son

Lying limp in his arms

Needing help, desperate for it

As bombs explode overhead

Casualties of War

Chaos 

Burned flesh

Their scent blowing in the air

Little boy with eyes missing

Can you hear him weeping?

For his children?

Both sides, all his

Casualties of War

Tears, wailing, all wanting quiet

A little peace

A little joy

A chance to be free

Faces silent, mourning

Still living

Eyes staring darkly into photo lenses

Hostility growing

Mothers wailing the loss of their children

Food delivered

Running for safety

Casualties of War

Sirens blaring

Civilians trying to get food

Suddenly are on the ground

Praying they are not next

Casualties of War

Death

Alone 

Dying, both sides

Bloody babies cradled 

In weeping mothers’ arms

Casualties of War

Can you hear him weeping?

Silent Sentries

Silent sentries 

Standing in murky mud

Heads bowed in defeat

Large yellow bulldozers stand guard

Wary of the unified Wood Storks

That have gathered

Muddy, silent, hungry

Unified Wood Storks poised, patient, waiting…

Frogs croak lazily, not realizing 

They are surrounded

Fifty strong sentries standing 

In murky mud- hungry

Frogs suddenly silenced 

Swimming in warm bellies

Large yellow bulldozers nervously 

Await their fate

From the silent sentries standing guard

In the murky mud

Tragedy Happens

Misunderstood

Judgments crept in

Minds made up

BOOM

Tragedy happens

Too many times in succession

Suddenly the haze clears 

Everything becomes crystal clear

Appreciation for our now

This moment

Please understand

Initially we misunderstood each other

Now I see you in their eyes

Their actions

The way they talk

The way they walk

The way they laugh

Small details in the most

Intricate things

Witty sayings

Silly ways

You’re still here

We are more for it

Shouldn’t we honor those in our now? 

Adore them?

Love them?

Cherish them? 

Misunderstandings happen

Maybe we should always think about

Positive intention

Family-to-family

Friends-to-friends

Sometimes altered forever

Thankful for the gift 

Of tragedy 

It reminds us of what is true

In our lives

Right now

Angels…send, send, send

Left engine of the airplane blew 

In under seven minutes of assent

A boom, ears ringing, fire ball out the left side of the window

I was sitting in seat 18C

The plane dipped to the left 

A hasty decent

Tummy now in throat

Cabin filled with hazy smoke like flecks of pepper

Eyes, nose and throat burning 

Stewardess ran down the isle screaming, 

“We’re on fire, we’re on fire, we are ALL going to die”

Die? Right here, right now? 

The hum of one engine struggled to keep the plane erect

Vibrating

Shaking

Sputtering

Die, in an airplane…

My throat constricts

I can not speak

Inside my head I scream, 

“She’s three, God- she’s three. Three.” 

Visions of her sweet eyes

Hair that smells like watermelon shampoo

Little hand holding mine

Sweet kisses

Cuddling hugs

I want to see her grow up

I want to be there for her graduation

Her wedding

I want to hold her babies in my lap. 

Sobbing passengers are heard through out the plane

Tears pour down my cheeks

I am frozen

Dream of clawing my way out of a plane 20,000 feet in the air 

Sputtering

Shaking

A stranger holds my hands and whispers, 

“We are going to make it, we are not going to die”

In my head I can not form sentences

I keep thinking, “Angels, angels, send, send, send.”

The plane lands

Everyone let’s out a whoop of glee and relief

The pilot gets on the intercom and says, 

“We’ve just had catastrophic engine failure of our left engine. We’re on the ground now, have a nice day.” 

Angels deployed

I’m watching my little girl grow up

Jeni McCreary

Date of event: 10/11/2005

(attached is a picture of my boarding pass that I clutched in my hand. You can barely make it out from the sweat of the not letting it go during this event. I keep it as a reminder that life is too short and too precious. Embrace every day… every day)