Sunday, March 16, 2014

Silent Memorial

Silent Memorial

Two tall brick chimneys stand

Silent sentinels among the weeds

Debris of days at end

The dead still among us

A monument to youth

Facing one another straight and square

Ever fixed in time yet infinity looms

In the firebox

Now but gaping jaws

Devouring light and joy

Flames once roared

Warmth became inferno

Hearth no more a refuge

No comfort there found

As walls fell in agony

Lives not yet lived

Hopes consumed

Dreams to terror and rage

Breath sucked from the breast

As smoke poured in

Each time I pass my eyes scour

Searching for the wildflower

The fledgling bird in nest

Craving mute testimony

For reason in the chaos

Forty years since passed

Yet still they stand

Through winter's gloom

In autumns tapestry

Unwavering in resolve

~ Ellen Apple

16 March 2014

There was a house fire when I was in 12th grade. Sisters perished in the old 2-story white house, and the chimneys are still there, at the junction of Middle Creek and the Cedar Bluff Road, across from the Perry farm. Up on a hill, surrounded by overgrowth. The family name was Osborne. I remember the tragedy every time I go to Mom's and see those chimneys, a silent memorial to lives lost so young.... They perished Feb 18, 1977. They were one year apart in age, Nancy was born in 1960, Carolyn in 1961. Juanita also perished, she was born around 1966 and was in the fifth grade.

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