Posted April 16th 2013 at 1:12 pm by
in From the Editor, Walking

The Morning After A Bomb

I was in New York when I got the news. I wanted to be delivered, via catapult, directly to the bomb site. Maybe I could clean up the blood, or help one frantic person feel better. It was late at night when I finally got back to Boston. Today, the morning after, the bomb site is blocked off. This is what it’s like in Boston:

The Morning After A Bomb

I want the TV news people to go away.

Look at the half-dressed manikin. When I saw it I imagined a pair of distressed shopkeepers running out of the store after they heard the news.

The Morning After A Bomb

Her arms are on the floor. All those real limbs went missing yesterday — blown off, never to be reattached.

The Morning After A Bomb

The duck pond is so beautiful today. I even got this shot of a flying duck. The duck pond could have been the thing that was bombed.

The Morning After A Bomb

Two months ago the duck pond was solid ice and I walked across it on my way to work. They just filled it with fresh water and gravel a week ago. By the summer, it’ll be murky.

The Morning After A Bomb

Along the Charles River, new grass is growing over the trash.

The Morning After A Bomb

Boston Police barriers are all over my neighborhood because I live only a few blocks from the bomb site. This one made it to the Charles somehow.

The Morning After A Bomb

Usually the marathon runners are everywhere on the day after the race. They go running. Again. And they all have their matching jackets. Today the runners I saw on the Charles were regulars. Maybe the marathoners did their runs earlier.

The Morning After A Bomb

This collection of reeds looks like an amphitheater to me. The rocks look like seats to a play.

The Morning After A Bomb

I’ve published many stories about community-wide traumas on this site. Shoko survived the Great East Japan Earthquake. Alpita tried desperately to reach her family in India after a bomb went off in Mumbai. Now we have this thing in Boston, in a neighborhood that feels like a piece of my body.

There is this story from Sarajevo. It was 1992 and Bosnia-Herzegovina was in a civil war. A bomb exploded at a bakery one afternoon, killing 22 people who were in line for bread. A man named Vedran Smailovic lived near the bakery. He was a cellist with the opera orchestra in Sarajevo. He shopped at the bakery sometimes. For the next 22 days, Smailovic took his Cello from his apartment to the bombed-out bakery and set up in front of it. Each day he played a piece of music to commemorate one of the dead.

Post by Alexa Mills.

5 responses to “The Morning After A Bomb”

  1. Elizabeth Bloom says:

    A heart-breakingly beautiful tribute, Alexa!

  2. Beautiful post! The pictures capture the irony, for me at least, that in our hearts, we feel such shock, and yet from the outside, little has changed. The water is still beautiful, the sun is shining, the duck is flying. The grass is growing . . . ,

  3. Jonathan Cherry says:

    Thanks for this, Alexa.

  4. Cindy says:


  5. Alexa Mills says:

    Thank you, all.