On This Day

Today is the sixth anniversary of April 16, 2007; the day that 32 people lost their lives in a senseless tragedy at my beloved Virginia Tech.    Today is the day that too many people will wake up hoping that the terrible tragedy in Boston yesterday was a nightmare, only to discover that, heartbreakingly, it wasn’t.  My heart is heavy for so many families and communities.    As someone touched by unthinkable tragedy, I want to encourage you to hold the ones you love tightly and appreciate the many, simple blessings in your life.  Blessings such as having dinner together or a quick text to say, “I love you,”  which can so easily be taken for granted.

I will be back tomorrow with normal posting.  But today I want to offer up this poem, which Nikki Giovanni gave as her address at the convocation for Virginia Tech.

We are Virginia Tech.

We are sad today, and we will be sad for quite a while. We are not moving on, we are embracing our mourning.

We are Virginia Tech.

We are strong enough to stand tall tearlessly,

we are brave enough to bend to cry,

and we are sad enough to know that we must laugh again.

We are Virginia Tech.

We do not understand this tragedy. We know we did nothing to deserve it, but neither does a child in Africa dying of AIDS, neither do the invisible children walking the night away to avoid being captured by the rogue army, neither does the baby elephant watching his community being devastated for ivory, neither does the Mexican child looking for fresh water, neither does the Appalachian infant killed in the middle of the night in his crib in the home his father built with his own hands being run over by a boulder because the land was destabilized. No one deserves a tragedy.

We are Virginia Tech.

The Hokie Nation embraces our own and reaches out with open heart and hands to those who offer their hearts and minds. We are strong, and brave, and innocent, and unafraid. We are better than we think and not quite what we want to be. We are alive to the imaginations and the possibilities. We will continue to invent the future through our blood and tears and through all our sadness.

We are the Hokies.

We will prevail.

We will prevail.

We will prevail.

We are Virginia Tech.

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