Bataclan – in memoriam

Look.
See the faces, the smiles, the eyes,
The names.

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Lola, 17 years old

So many tributes

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Juan Alberto Gonzalés Garrido, 29 years old

Each one with
A particular sense of humor,
A unique perspective,
That quirk that no one else quite had.

Brother, sister, daughter, son
Mother, father
Beloved
Friend

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The scene stretches on and on,
In front of the shuttered venue and across the street.
Even a block away,
Tributes and more tributes are spread on the sidewalks.

Candles pool with rainwater;
A few flames flicker.
Bouquets droop in the cold and wet;
So many of the messages have become little more than streaks of damp.

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It’s been twelve days.

I didn’t know a single one of them. The closest I’ve come to being touched by the events was when I passed a memorial shrine outside a communication school near our apartment; one of the students had died in the attacks.

The rain picks up. Fall is quickly giving way to winter in Paris and I’m reminded that I need a warmer coat. I dodge another puddle as I cross back over to the other side of the street. An officer with an automatic rifle paces along the narrow street next to the Bataclan.

I pass a man wiping his face with a handkerchief. Are they tears, or just the rain? It’s hard to say. I find the metro stop a few blocks away and head home. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving.

A day for remembering.

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“We will not forget you”

 

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