Twenty-two stars | a poem
I’ve been thinking about how best to respond to the events of last Monday here on my blog. My last post, a day before, was about my Ariana Grande concert. The news that a bomb had gone off, killing and injuring people at an Ariana concert just four days after I’d seen her sickened me to my stomach. This hit me harder than anything, quite possibly ever. I can’t even remember a time or a reason I cried as much as I did this time last week. Because as you know, concerts are my happy place. They are the place where I feel at my happiest, my safest, where I completely forget anything else and feel truly alive. And the fact that people were stripped of that at the very place that represents the opposite of what happened really upset me. I kept thinking back to my concert, remembering how many tiny kids were there in their Ariana t shirts and bunny ears, the biggest smiles on their faces. All that kept running through my head was the fact that it could have happened to any of us on what was supposed to be the best night of our lives.
Over the past week, my heart has somewhat been healed by the response to this horrific attack. The kindness of ordinary people, the massive outpouring of love by celebrities, the adamant will of the British public to not let this defeat us. If anything, this has made us stronger. We are determined not to let these horrific acts stop us living our lives and doing what we love the most. Because once you are scared to live your life, they’ve won. And we can’t let them win.
After a lot of reflection, I decided I couldn’t go on posting ‘normal’ blog posts without some kind of tribute to the victims of this senseless act of violence. So I responded the best way I know how and wrote a poem. Poetry is my outlet for my emotions about the hardest things in life that I otherwise wouldn’t be able to express in words, so here’s my response to the horrific attack in Manchester on May 22nd. Dedicated to the 22 angels we lost, their families, friends and everyone involved or affected by this tragedy.
The news broke, and so did my heart.
We rolled our eyes
at the kids squealing behind us
catching a glimpse of their idol,
while days later, girls just like them
would be screaming in fear.
My safe place
where I forget all my troubles,
how dare you try
to take that away from us?
If you wanted to make us scared,
well done, you failed.
You may have shaken our world,
rattled us to the core,
torn people’s lives apart,
taken others away before they’d begun.
But we are picking up the pieces,
gluing them together
into an imperfect jigsaw.
We walk the streets
Despite our heavy hearts
and the cracks you left.
We’ll make more noise,
because music is a bond of love
that will always be louder than hate.
Seas of bouquets, balloons
and signs of defiance adorn the streets
as far as the eye can see.
Now twenty-two stars
shine brighter than the others
in the infinite night sky.
Take care of yourselves, stay safe, don’t be afraid to live your life. Don’t let them win.
All the love, x