Riding the subway over the Manhattan Bridge in the brilliant September sunlight, I take in the blue sky over downtown. The moon is starkly visible just to the left of the black-shrouded Deutsche Bank building. Right there, right? That's where they would have been. I barely remember anymore.
The subway car is quiet, seemingly moreso than the normal morning commute sleepiness might explain. Am I imagining the pinched look in people's eyes? Are they thinking what I'm thinking? About this time, five years ago; about how the sparkling sky seems ominous now; about whether we are safe here, now, on this D train, on this fragile steel structure 135 feet above the water? How could they not?
It's going to be a long day. I have so much work to do, but I'm finding it hard to concentrate. A buzz of bile fizzes in my stomach, up my throat. I swear I'll ignore it all, but find myself pouring over the NY Times. My headache persists.
We are so lucky, those of us who survived, those of us who knew no one who died. I never even got out of my apartment door that day - I was running late when I saw the news. My love was at work, but safe - she would have to walk all day to get home, but she was able to reach me by phone near the beginning and the end, and I knew she would make it. I watched the collapses from my fire escape, until the obscene snow began to fall over my neighbourhood - the snow of ash.
I don't know what to do. I am tired of the pomp, the patriotic plattitudes, the opportunistic corporations and politicans, the flags and fearmongering and crocodile tears while there is still a hole in my city, my heart; the survivors can't get decent healthcare and the sons and daughters of our country fight in a war that has nothing to do with this anniversary, except that it is used as a pathetic excuse. I am tired and I am mourning and I am angry. But I sit here at my work desk and try to act normal, telling myself it will be better, with ibuprofen, by tomorrow, in time.
Will it? When?