“Parkland” – A Poem by Frank J. Maduri

Here is my poem on the tragic events today in a Florida High School


Alerts on my phone, alerts on my computer screen;
Reveal an unfortunately familiar type of scene.
A school with kids fleeing, hands raised high;
Under a clear, innocent looking sky
High school kids – their lives a clean page
Some lives lost, others altered, in an act of rage.
The news broadcast talked about the reaction –
Of the students being so collected, calm
To the horrible situation they were in
Because they have drills for shooters or a bomb –
In schools like this one outside of Miami
A usually very safe place called Parkland
A place where you would want to raise a family
A place now failing to grip or to understand;
How this could have happened, how a student
Could open fire on other kids this afternoon
How others feel that gun control isn’t prudent
Except when you’re the parent of a child taken too soon
Then that perspective changes, it alters
As our society, our government routinely falters
Parkland, it sounds so idyllic, yet it joins a list;
A list of American places where kids have died:
Columbine, Paducah, Newtown, Virginia Tech, Roseburg
A list nobody wants their town to be mentioned
Our country’s values have to be questioned
How can this behavior persist without consequences?
How have we all collectively lost all of our senses?
The events today should not be tolerated
A school is a safe haven not to be desecrated –
By violence, hatred, or anything destructive
It should foster thoughts that are positive, constructive
The terrible images today in Parkland
Are among the tragedies I will never understand
I will take time tonight to solemnly pray
For those families effected by a shooting on Ash Wednesday
To ask God above to help us all to find –
Our way back to a place where we are humble and kind
To a place where we can all live in peace
Where violence and hatred all will cease
Where hope and freedom will last, will glisten
I pray that God above will listen

(c) 2018 Frank J. Maduri – All rights reserved