The Sterling Castle


We live in that castle on the hill.

Can you see it?

There’s plenty of room. Or there used to be.

It’s filling up quickly. More quickly as time passes.

There’s a place for the college students.

And for the battered women.

For the theater goers.

And for the patients.

And for those who simply went to work.

There’s room for the cops.

For those who listened.

And those who didn’t.

The clubbers are here.

So are the Christmas party attendees.

And the high school students.

And the parishioners.

And the teachers.

And the children.

None were planning to come here.

New ones arrive every day.

Blame is not welcome.

Past sins unseen.

Lines that once divided us are gone.

We live here in the sterling castle.

Where none of us were meant to be.

Can you see us?

Every time a violent tragedy strikes our country, my heart aches, yet I’ve been resistant to write to it. After the events of the past few days, weeks, and months, I needed to honor the heartache. It’s felt far and wide across our land.

I chose to write from the perspective of those taken by gun violence. After every tragedy I see people – friends and family included – go to sometimes extreme measures to shape it into something that fits their narrative.

But people died. Each tragedy resulted in death. Take away all politics and that is still true. That’s what this post is about. Humanity lies behind every hashtag. And I think if anything will bring us together, it’s that.


10 thoughts on “The Sterling Castle

  1. My heart is sore, and my head bowed in shame for what continues, and was attenuated, in my native U.S.
    We see, but can’t identify enough to stop it.


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