Here is a poem inspired by a line from Emily Dickinson: “We grow accustomed to the dark.” The first line is hers, the rest mine.
We grow accustomed to the dark.
Slowly over time, the shadows creep.
Winding into our brains -
the inexorable turn of a screw.
Another child dies, another child kills.
The light dims.
We stagger, hands outstretched, eyes acclimating to the gray.
Westside Middle School. Thurston High School. Columbine. Rocori High. Red Lake. Virginia Tech. Chardon High School. Sandy Hook. Sparks Middle School. Isla Vista.
I’m blinded in the knowing.
I blink. I breathe. I pray.
Let me not grow accustomed to this dark.