“Orlando” has been published in the 2018 Winter issue of Pen Woman magazine, a national publication of the oldest literary organization for women in the US.

Orlando

I have driven through you,
I have stayed in your city—
Visited Disney with my daughter.

Still… Orlando, I had to be
almost three thousand miles away
to be touched by you,
to be at the edge of tears.

The Rose Bowl Parade, bands marching,
flower-filled floats, the pageantry, then
you arrive in a rainbow of bloom,

white stars on a blood-red sea,
a dove rising. The message—
Honor and Remember Orlando.

A cold and shrouded January sky,
a slow procession as the crowd
claps chilled hands. Hearts fill
and spill for you, Orlando.

I was horrified after the shooting,
glued to the screen as the tragedy
unfolded, yet no tears fell,

Orlando—until this flower-filled
morning of hope and healing,
at the beginning of this New Year.

Lorraine Walker Williams

Lorrainewalkerwilliams.com

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