Thursday, September 11, 2008

We Are Still Here

Most of you probably remember from your school days that the" Star Spangled Banner" was written by Francis Scott Key on the morning after a major battle during the War of 1812. He awoke to see the American flag still flying and was inspired to pen the poem which was later set to music. It wasn't until 1931 that it actually became our National Anthem.

I love the Star Spangled Banner. Though it is difficult to sing, I love to sing it. I always think about the meaning of the words as I'm singing it. I can never get through it without tears welling in my eyes.

O say can you see,
By the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hailed
At the twilight's last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars,
Through the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched
Were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets red glare,
The bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night,
That our flag was still there.
O say does that star spangled banner yet wave,
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Imagine waking after a terrible battle, not knowing if you'd won or lost, only to look out to the horizon to see Old Glory, waving gloriously. Victory!

That's how I felt after September 11, 2001. One image that stays in my mind is the sight of the American flag, its pole stuck deep in the smoldering rubble of the World Trade Center. My mind couldn't comprehend the tragedy that had just occurred and I was desperately seeking something to hold on to. And there, waving gloriously, was our flag.

We are still here. Though we lost so many on that terrible day and our souls and our hearts are bruised and beaten, though we will never forget, we are still here.

And we're not going anywhere.

Burgh Baby's Mom has a moving tribute to the heroes killed in United Flight 93. For the month of September she is donating all ad revenues from her site to the Flight 93 Memorial Fund. The more visits she gets, the more money she'll raise, so go check out her wonderful tribute to those brave souls. If you wish, you can also donate directly to the fund by going here.


calicobebop said...

Great post! I remember the surge of patriotic pride that immediately followed the attack. It felt good to have the entire country united under that flag.

Katie in MA said...

I have goosebumps. Thanks for a wonderfully written post. We all need a reminder from time to time what our flag really means! Beautiful.

Leslie said...

MQ, you may not remember this, but something you said to me after 9/11 helped me greatly. I was pregnant with Birdie at the time and feeling so despondent about bringing a little life into a world that had seemed to turn upside down. You said, "Well, it's actually a good thing [having a baby] because you're helping to tip the balance toward the good side." I was more comforted by that than you could possibly know, and have thought about your words again and again whenever the world seems crazy and I look at my sweet children. What a terrible time that was and what a blessing that we are all still here. Thank you for this lovely post of remembrance for 9/11.

Laurel said...

Very moving post. I will never forget 9/11, and I pray we will never have to endure such tragedy on our soil again. God bless America, please.

Karen said...

May we never forget. I love the American flag, flying proudly and heroically through all the turmoil. Thank you for pointing that out.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Boy-Child#2 was telling me about the Patriot Day assembly out by the flag pole at school and he said that when they played the national anthem he got tears in his eyes. He's 8. I don't know if I was more floored by his sensitivity or the fact that he told me.

Burgh Baby said...

Thank you!