Two September Poems

Abigail Deutsch

Stuyvesant High School, New York City, 2001

After the planes struck
I walked downstairs slowly,

one foot hitting
the stairway,

and one foot hitting
the stairway,

and the stairway shaking —
the stairway shaking

but not because a tower was falling,
and the tower not falling

because it could not fall,
and the stairway not shaking.



Brooklyn Technical High School, 2001

Always lost and late
we walked new hallways,
Techies blitzing us
with spitballs. Served us right

for wearing our old smiles and skin
as if we’d simply switched location.
Of course we understood
the world was over.

Strange, the way it all continued
even so. Stranger, how it’s gone on since. 
Even now I dream of flames and falling,
over and over

until those dreams grow ordinary.
So my long panic comforts me.