Monday, May 9, 2011

Remembering September 11th

This is a piece I made in response to the assassination of Osama Bin Laden,
it is called, Not Enough Tears.
 Here is a close up
My husband told me the news right after I woke, my mind could barely process the news. I listened to reports on the radio. I listened as co-workers discussed it at lunch, and I listened as my teenage students made ignorant comments and assumptions about conspiracy theories. I did not discuss it, because I could not. I did not know what to say, how to feel, what to think.

Once I was in the safety of my own home, I watched a video of the president’s announcement. While my mind might not have known what to think, my heart brought tears. I sat and wept. But for what? I was so confused. I tried to process my feelings.

I am fortunate to say that as a New Yorker, I did not lose a loved one, but I know many who have. I was a third year teacher in Brooklyn. I peaked out of my classroom window on that faithful day, and in one moment saw the Twin Towers, and in next they were gone.

While the death of OBL is a victory for America, it reminds me of all we lost, the lives, the innocence, the sense of safety. His single death does not bring me closure, it reignites my heartbreak. As I sat weeping all by myself, I realized, there will never be enough tears to mourn the tragic events of September 11th.

I walked around my house, I needed to do something, to sew, to piece swatches of fabric together. To feel the fabric in my hands, to hear the hum of my sewing machine. I needed to make something. I start with blue fabric, blue for tears. I piece them together, 1 inch squares. I included some orange and yellow at the top to represent hope. We must always have hope. Over the next 6 days I complete the piece. I stitched out the towers in the middle with grey thread. I hand sewed beads to represent tears. I added a black border to represent grief.

Do I feel better? No, I doubt I ever will.

This piece will be part of an exhibit by The Fiber Artists of Hope to honor the ten-year anniversary of September 11th. All pieces will be 9” x 11”.

2 comments:

  1. Beautiful piece, and I love your very honest statement that goes with it. Much love, Lucky

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  2. Kerry O'Leary SpillaneMay 10, 2011 at 2:41 PM

    Jeanette,
    Just reading this brings tears to my eyes. There really aren't enough tears anytime we think back on that awful day.
    I needed to explain to the boys last week who OBL was, what he did, and how much was lost, who we lost. I had to explain it in a way that didn't scare them, but conveyed our sorrow. I will say, I am glad that when the time came to discuss September 11t with my children, I was able to have some sort of ending for their version. I was able to say, "we got the bad man."
    Newsweek has an article written by a 19 year old whose dad worked for Cantor Fitzgerald. It is very moving.
    Thank you for sharing. I passed along your information to a 9/11 Support Group who does a lot of community outreach and has a few ties in the art community.

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