Bob Horan


Megan's Song - Ringlets in your Hair

Read to you at bedtime moments we would share

Till your eyes got heavy and  i  left you sleeping there

Later on I’d check to see you sleeping dreaming there

Till I could see your breathing neath ringlets in your hair

Woke you in the morning you pick out what to wear

Your breakfast is ready i tied a ribbon in your hair

We walked to school together i left you safely there

Rings on your fingers and ringlets in your hair

A big girl now we talked one night it was September 10

Next day you walked to school alone -  and two planes did descend

Into the towers 100 yards  from you and your school

i hurried down to start my searchthrough the ash and fumes

They're loading boats with anyone who could not make the bridge

Some stayed to search for friends and kin or all remaining kids

I still don't know where you are, I can't leave till I know

If you made it safety out, or wandering here below

The south tower has collapsed now I feel the pelting sand

The sky is black the phones are dead is this the way it ends

i found a student in the haze, I don't know how he knew  

About a red-haired girl after just 3 days at school

He said: "rings on her fingers ringlets in her hair"

He pointed to a broken door, "I think you'll find her there"

I found you in the morning sitting, smiling there

With broken glass around you and ringlets in your hair

A 9/11 Blues

A late summer morn so severely clear thunder met my ears

Fire and death ½ a mile from home and my eyes confirmed my fears

A voice of fright from my phoning wife it’s down near our Megan’s school

So off I fled to find my child in these 9/11 Blues


Through disbelief and denial - I kept my focus clear

Go down and find my youngest child - less it get worse down there

I passed by displaced workers, staring numbly at the sky

At the ones, who'd rather face the fire, chose to jump and die


Life and death decisions by the minute, by the hour

To evacuate two high schools and remaining office towers

We emptied into Battery Park where our loved ones might be found

Till the fleeing birds, and a wall of smoke, meant the south tower had come down


The black rain fell from a man-made hell  melted bones and steel

No time to comprehend our fear or fathom what was real

I found grace in many there that day , kindness and courage too

As New York  bore it’s baptism of fire and these 9/11 Blues


The world we knew was changing, right before our eyes

I can taste a bit of the pain and loss of loved ones left behind

My daughter walked to school that day and her class room held the view

100 yards from the falling chars in these 9/11 Blues


I have come to think that bravery is but a presence of the mind

Not courage to search for those you love, but to fear they be left behind

But what about these guardians  walking bravely to the fire

Who for the sake of strangers fate, showed willingness to die

So I glimpsed a look in their selfless book of why they do what they do

As I finally found my red-haired child in these 9/11 Blues


My mind now filled with numbness as my hope of hopes came true

And while in that place of brief respite, the second tower blew

But the western wind was kind for now, for the fires still burned true

Fore the sun now bright was an eyrie sight in these 9/11 Blues


From Vesey Street, to Arthur Kill, a procession daily made

To carry away our neighbors, and friends we lost that day

From my bedroom I saw past the West St. fence the lights of red and blue

Where from Crane, to Truck, to floating barge, they passed through the ashen dew


The hardest part was to pass each day the pictures of the dead

Hung by kin and co-workers in hopeful, fearful dread

Each photo is a fading star in the hazy harbor hue

As their souls took flight in the New York night from these 9/11 Blues


They will soon be paving over that scarred and pitted road

That I walk each night 'neath the bright flood lights where iron and ash had flowed

As Afghan Hills recoil and quake , I keep a vigil here for you

As the dead recede from the air we breathe and these 9/11 Blues