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Once Blue Skies

Updated on April 23, 2014

By: Wayne Brown

Clear blue skies on a day so full of promise across the land

The blue sky seemed but snagged on your towering spired spans

America the beautiful was awaking to yet another new day

But something sinister was amiss out across the blue airway

The first aircraft came flying in; slammed high upon the wall

Breaking down all resistance and setting fires to it all

Leaving a gaping gash to be gazed upon in sheer horror

Wondering for the moment, would there be a tomorrow?

The confusion, the panic, the unknown state of those early times

No one could fathom in that moment the horror in their minds

Minutes passed; sirens wailed, as smoke and flames choked out

Horrified people in the street ran helter-skelter all about

Then a second airplane, a fiery blast, another tower is now hit

And the awful, ugly truth is coming to light of all of it

People scream in horror; cry out from above in all their fear

Firemen, policeman, emergency crews, are finally getting here

Into the burning buildings the emergency respondents bravely did go

To find survivors and lead them down the stairs; down to safety low

Still there were those up too high, and many were their names

Who died in fear and chose to jump to avoid the burning flames

Still the valiant responders worked to save one life by one

They would not rest until all were down; each and every one

Back into the buildings, on the stairs, courage fighting their fears

To do their job and save those souls the flames were going near

Then without a warning, the first tower collapsed to the ground

Who there among them could forget that awful deafening sound?

Then the moments after with the dust as thick as any curtain

That reality hits and loss of life was the only the thing that was certain

Victims and responders in the tower as it collapsed into a pile of rubble

Emotions soaring as we look at the second tower; see the same trouble

The fears rise even higher as the horrible fate now has been shown

And the second tower collapses into a pile of smoking steel and stone

Death is all about us; trapped in this dusty flaming wreckage

Confusion reigns supreme; survivors run from the unexpected

Dust and smoke boil from the heaps coating everything around

New York is under siege; fear and confusion grip this town

And far out over Pennsylvania, Flight 93 tries to execute its plan

To fly back to Washington and bring carnage to our leaders’ land

Brave souls aboard did not wane; they fought with nerves of steel

And rode that airplane to their deaths in a Pennsylvania field

Those in the Pentagon were worried and busy with the attacks

It never dawned upon them to watch out for their own backs

Then one last plane dropped from the sky; plowed into the ground

Ripping holes into the Pentagon buildings; carnage all around

It’s been ten years since that fateful day of that surprise aerial attack

Ten long years of counting and burying our dead; trying to get back

Ten years to remember each name; the thousands who had died

Ten years mourning those tried to save them; the courage; their pride

History has marked the world with events to be eternally decried

Pearl Harbor, Nagasaki, Hiroshima, and Adolf Hitler’s genocide

And now one more marks the pages of history’s hated ugly sins

We pray for our beloved dead and vow it won’t happen ever again

©Copyright WBrown2011. All Rights Reserved.


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    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @thebluestar...Compassion has always been at America's heart although I am not sure how long that will be so. We seem more interested now in just wasting money. This was a day never to be forgotten in America (I hope). Political Correctness is already calling us out not to blame anyone in particular for it so you see we have some forces at work in America who care little for the truth. WB

    • thebluestar profile image

      Annette Donaldson 6 years ago from Northern Ireland

      Wayne, I remember sitting at home in the evening and watching this terrible event unfold on sky television. I could not believe what my eyes were seeing or what my ears were hearing. One of the things that appreciate the most in the American citizen is there compassion for fellow human beings, and their ability to shed a tear for others. If only more Brits could follow the example. Many watch and listen, and even more walk away.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Dim Flaxenwick...Thank you, I am so glad I could capture that span of time in verse. WB

    • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

      Dim Flaxenwick 6 years ago from Great Britain

      This poem was a beautiful tribute and reminder to us all of the brave on that awful day.

      You captured the spirit of the initial confusion and the overall sadness in a wonderful poem.

      Thank you and God bless.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Genna East....Thank you, Genna. Glad I could do justice to the subject...a monumental one. WB

      @Zabbella...Thank you so much! WB

      @Deb Welch...Thank you, glad I could put you in the action with my words. WB

      @50 Caliber...Thanks Dusty, I appreciate the good words. WB

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 6 years ago from Arizona

      Great tribute Wayne, voted up, dust

    • profile image

      Deb Welch 6 years ago

      Awesome and beautiful. I could feel the people rushing about when I was reading your lines. Excellent Hub in Tribute for a Horrific Day in our lives. Thumbs up.

    • Zabbella profile image

      Zabbella 6 years ago from NJ-USA

      This was a beautiful tribute.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 6 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Beautifully crafted, Wayne, and a splendid tribute. I don’t think any of us will ever forget where we were on that day, during those horrific moments. Words fail me just now, as tears fill my eyes with great sadness over what happened; the thousands who lost their lives, as well the many stories of bravery and courage in the face of such infamy and terror. Thank you for this amazing hub.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @Truckstop Sally...Amazing Grace has such a healing sound to it...sad yet uplifting in some ways...maybe it is a form of purification by music, I don't know. Thanks for all the good words! WB

    • Truckstop Sally profile image

      Truckstop Sally 6 years ago

      What a wonderful tribute to the men and women who worked to save victims of the World Trade Center bombings and those who tried to spare the Pentagon. Your images are so real -- New York is under siege; fear and confusion grip this town

      I have avoided hearing Amazing Grace for 15 years (since my Mom's funeral), but I listened to your video tonight . . . and it is beautiful. Thanks for sharing. May we all remember the day -- so we can work towards never repeating it.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @RealHousewife...Thank you. I found that photo chillingly related to my chosen title...Once Blue Skies. This is a time in history we should never forget. WB

      @marellen...Thank you. Sorry to make you sad but it is important that we remember such a day. WB

      Hypenbird...Thank you, so glad the words came to me when I sat down to write this. WB

      @saddlerider1...What you sad is true, never forgets the first moment they realized what was happening on that day and exactly where they were at the moment. I have had one other experience as such and that was the Kennedy Assassination. Thanks much. WB

      @snakeslane...Thank you so much. So glad that I could do it. WB

      @Fennelseed...Thank you. Indeed it does go down with that list as being a very ugly day in the history of the world. WB

    • Fennelseed profile image

      Annie Fenn 6 years ago from Australia

      I also remember the breaking news on the car radio as I drove to work that morning here in Australia and the disbelief of all I encoutered that day. Could it possibly be real or some War of the Worlds type delusion? If only. Your poem captures that day and the aftermath with great compassion and the events that are indeed "history’s hated ugly sins".

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 6 years ago from Canada

      So good to see this tribute, been thinking about this sad anniversary all day, good work!

    • saddlerider1 profile image

      saddlerider1 6 years ago

      It doesn't matter what country were from, I remember exactly where I was that day and the shock and horror that overcame me and tears fell from my face. I am still in shock from that horrible event and the strength and will of the American people, working together to help each man, woman and child who were trapped inside.

      The first responders I honor and salute and can't thank them enough for serving their countrymen the way they did and many gave up their own lives for that cause. Wayne you have written a heart wrenching tribute to that awful day and I thank you and salute you sir...

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 6 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      Wayne, you did it justice and honored those innocents whose lives were taken or forever changed that terrible day. My heart still aches, actually it hurts more now because I know what those lost have missed in these years. Bless you for writing this in simple beauty.

    • profile image

      marellen 6 years ago

      I have tears in my eyes Wayne. You did a beautiful job depicting that sad day. You did it justice and I'm glad you published it...

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      WB - when I clicked on the link.....the print appeared quickly and I was wondering what you had cooked up today....then the photo appeared slowly - pixels clearing the towers got larger and the puzzle piece clicked. That in and of itself gave me a little chill....excellent writing and poem. Had to stop to comment on this one!

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @K.Burns Darling...Thank you K., I wrestled with this one mentally...was not sure that I did it justice and somewhat reluctant to publish it in that light. I apprectiate the great feedback. WB

      @Becky Katz...Thank you...I appreciate the kind words. WB

    • Becky Katz profile image

      Becky Katz 6 years ago from Hereford, AZ

      A beautiful memorial to a terrible day. Thank you.

    • K. Burns Darling profile image

      Kristen Burns-Darling 6 years ago from Orange County, California

      Hauntingly and tragically beautifully done! What an absolutely well-crafted and haunting tribute to all those who were lost that day, and reminder that we shall never forget them. Voted up, awesome, beautiful, interesting. (I posted it on my FB wall)


    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      @moneycop...It was definitely an unforgettable day and should remain such. When we lose almost 3,000 people in one day here on our own soil, we need to remember the details and mourn their loss. Thanks for the good words. WB

    • moneycop profile image

      moneycop 6 years ago from JABALPUR

      the most dreadful story.....god those who died there....but hey u have done a beauty again..thanks for sharing and creating it in poetic..form

      that day when world trade center was struck ed...was the most embarrassed day to humanity the 10 year old but still alive in a form of tearing and fearing feeling in all of us...i pray again.......