Twelve years ago today I was sitting in my 8th grade algebra class when our principal's voice came over the intercom system to notify the students of the 9/11 attacks. In the days following, I wrote this poem. I read it over the radio for our local station and it was published in a 2002 issue of Creative Kids magazine. I had a volleyball game that night and we listened to President Bush's address over the radio while we were on the bus. I interviewed some of my friends about what they thought; their words are scribbled on a piece of notebook paper somewhere. I remember my mom telling me, "This is a day you will never forget. For the rest of your life you will remember exactly where you were when you heard about this."

America Under Attack
Like a scene out of a movie,
It all happened extremely fast.
Hard to accept the truth,
Something belonging in the past.
We've been attacked by terrorists.
The words seemed so untrue.
Thousands killed, yet just as bad
It was our planes they flew.
Because they hate America
They started to hijack.
Diving from the sky:
A suicide attack.
Evil, taking lives,
Not caring who they hurt.
Quickly, without warning,
No hint of an alert.
Felt across the nation,
Anger and sadness filled the land.
Allies, neighboring countries
Stop to lend a hand.
Children's moms and dads,
Neighbors and close friends:
Faced with despicable terror,
Their lives came to an end
So much talk of war
Yet no chaos or retreat;
Whoever planned this murder:
Justice they will meet.
Worry and confusion,
Pray for those who died.
This wasn't supposed to happen;
I just want to know why.
The president said we'd be all right;
He said America was strong.
"What if," I often wonder,
"The president is wrong?"

Alyssa Reeves, age 13 
Sept. 13, 2001

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