we all remember the pictures. the towers, the planes, the smoke, the debris, the chaos. one glimpse and a decade melts away. you’re right back there again. at the towers, at the pentagon, in a field in pennsylvania.
it was the silence that got me. have you ever been in a car accident? you remember the feel of the accident, the sensation of an abrupt stop. you remember hearing the distinct bang, the sound of metal bending, glass breaking. then silence. it’s always followed by silence.
either time stops or your brain stops time to process, but the sound is the last thing to return. the silence looms large before sound floods back in.
the skies were silent. i never realized how easily we were used to the sounds of planes overhead until they were all gone.
then came the fighter jets. a very distinct and different sound, they woke me up from sleep during the night. they flew in pairs and criss-crossed the sky. always in pairs.
the 9/11 tapes were released this week. cockpit recordings of the monsters who fulfilled their sick mission, the screams of terrified passengers. air traffic controllers in the towers trying to make sense of what they were hearing. all followed by silence.
it’s in that moment of silence that we have the opportunity to decide what comes next. a sob, a prayer, a scream or quiet resolve.
sounds that changed a world.