Friday, May 25, 2012

Before Amber Alerts

Their pictures were on milk cartons
and taped to toll-way booths.
They appeared briefly in advertising fliers

for carpet and upholstery cleaning:
these mug shots of missing children,
small line-ups stalled in their short,

photographic histories.
Maybe we have seen this child before
on his way to nowhere or in a grocery store

clutched by the wrong hand,
locked in a large grip,
or crying on some park bench

with not-so-childlike bruises 
far from home.
And what should we make of their absences,

like God's heart,
of those parents held in an escrow of death
while the earth hides them beneath its skin? 

1 comment:

  1. I was reading the news about Etan this morning and saw an interview with his father last night. I cried when I saw his father tear up with fresh thirty year old heartache. Thank you for expressing my feelings so poignantly in your poem. I want to protect all the children in the world....I wish that I could......