I heart Manchester. But I must say if I won the lottery this week I wouldn’t mind a second home in NYC. Since I visited New York I’ve been a bit obsessed, going as far as writing a novel about it. Today is obviously a significant day for the city. I prefer to think of 9/11 as a New York event, the way it brought a city together, the way it showed community, and courage and the way the tragedy was felt city-wide. When you start thinking about it in World Event terms I think it gets inextricably linked to President Bush being a moron, Ongoing wars and American bankruptcy.
I don’t know if these 9/11 anniversaries will last decade after decade – aswell as commemorate the lost they serve to make us more and more immune to the images on the TV – the bodies dropping from the windows. The American media has a way of turning events into epic, emotional blockbusters and they’re starting to absorb the reality and authenticity of 9/11 into a movie-style format of crying children and dusty firemen. They should have named this New York Day so that in the future it could become a celebration of the city instead of being forever a gruesome reflection.
I published a poem in an anthology called The Harsh and the Heart in America earlier this year, and since the anthology has been released I think I own the rights again so I thought it might be appropriate. Comments welcome, how do you remember 9/11 are you sick of seeing the traumatic images or do you put time aside this time every year to recall the impact the day had on the world?New York Like the year’s first snowfall, the delicate flakes suspended – September’s blanket of dust covering the city. A comedy of porridge-coloured firemen blinking, Red-rimmed eyes, astonished, emptily coughing. Now we watch footage of it fall every September, We try to predict, now, no, now, any minute. But when it goes we’re still stunned and silent Cameras dart wildly, focused on legs pumping, shoes slipping. That hatched container crushed, backlit and billowing I remember how many were still inside, Clinging to the window-frames, gasping for air. With breathtaking city views watching below The rolling wall of fog crisscrossing outwards Like the ripples of a splash, swallowing runners, Choking survivors, blinding diners – The intimacy of underwater silence. And in the thick night someone stays filming, The after-wave of choked ghosts stumbling invisibly Grasp phones and cough over loved ones, desperately Blue sky opens up, and now expands endlessly. Dave Schofield obviously owns the copyright on this and everything else on the blog, it’s all me baby, anyone caught copying and pasting will be tickled in a public location until they wet themselves in front of everyone. However want to buy a print of a Manchester scene or of absolutely anywhere in fact for the low price of £10-£15, postage free to the UK, then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org