1000 Cars

I read that the northern New York suburbs had been "hard hit"
and wondered at such a phrase to describe those spaces for
the wealthy.

I read that cars were waiting in suburban parking lots
for workers in the World Trade Center
to come home from work.

These workers were not the bus boys, cooks, newspaper
venders, secretaries, cleaning women,
these workers
and God created them male and female,
were the wealthy ones who live in mansions
amid green lawns faraway from their well-paid jobs.

But that night,
and the next night,
and the next
saw no return for these workers to the waiting parking lots.

Children waited for their parents to return.
but these parents did not return.

We weep for all the children,
children of all ages
whose parents did not return to the Bronx,
                                               to Brooklyn,
                                               to other parts of Manhattan
                                               to Staten Island
                                               or to the green suburbs,
whose Mommies, Daddies, Mothers, Fathers,
those parents' names in so many languages
did not return.

1000 Cars, Denver, CO 2001

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