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We Sit Down In Tears
As I entered Battery Park, I heard a sound so fluent, a hair overpowered by the
rumble of the Twin Towers across the realms of the Hudson River. I followed it
as it gets more audible and I paused by a linden tree. I figured out that the
despondent but lurid hubbub was the final chorus of Bach's Passion According to
St. Matthew, "We Sit Down In Tears." I followed it again and that dolorific
piece of classical music was played by the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and
sung by the Montclair State University's chorus. After it concluded, I turned
about-faced for I felt the mayor of New York's and some of the locals who fled
from the perils of the tragedy across the periwinkle waters of the Hudson's eyes
gazing at me.
"Young lady," he asked, "who was playing and singing that beautiful music and
what was it? I can hear it as I ran seven-eighths across the Brooklyn Bridge."
"It was a dramatic excerpt from an oratorio, a musical passion of St. Matthew,"
I responded, "which reflect this dilemma. And the ones doing its rendition was
the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and the Montclair State University chorus."
"I heard that they're going to perform it in St. Patrick's Cathedral this
Friday," he said, and then inquired, "is that song part of the St. Matthew
"Yes, but please let them perform this oratorio for what happened this day. I
heard an explosion from my recreation vehicle and I watched what's going on
outside on my television set. I also perceived the Pentagon also being hit by a
plane and a plane crash near Shanksville, Pennsylvania."
After much discussion with the mayor, I attended many vigils and services during
the rest of the day until Friday. That day, I entered St. Patrick's at five a.
m, tired but prepared for a memorial concert. The soloists introduced themselves
and talked to me about the happening three days ago and went backstage to warm
up. Two of them were American, three were German, and one was an English
As the concert started at ten and continued till one, I listened with compassion
and bowed my head. As the oratorio's last chorus penetrated throughout the
cathedral, I stood up with the remainder of the audience and reflected the day
that the passion's final chorus signaled the sign of an American tragedy, one
disconsolate day that will never be belated forever: September the eleventh,
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