Prelim Round of Poetry Slam
|January 28, 1986
It was one of those days when the center seems to drop out of your life—
an eerie sort of blur—
just before the world slides into incomprehensible nightmare.
The first Teacher in Space, said she was gonna, “Go for it!”
And so, I watched.
I watched Christa McAuliffe,
the first private citizen ever to fly
on the silver bullet of the mighty Challenger,
Amidst the rocket’s red glare,
and the thunder of charging chariots,
I saw the kiss of the sun...
the glint of hope
from the shuttle as it rose—
rose like the finger of God toward the heavens.
My heart rose with it
and I was smiling…
73 seconds later there was an explosion…
a hollow thud…
that tore the afternoon sky asunder.
Seven astrounauts exploded
letting out blood and hair and bone
and perhaps the part of Christa’s brain that had made her say,
“Go for it! Touch the future...teach!”
I felt—felt strongly—
as the grisly remains rained down,
that I would cry.