Silhouettes in Red
We'd turn in every Silent Witness
to have one woman back alive,
but we can't--they're dead.
Carol, the homemaker; Marie, the
doctor; Bea, the alcoholic; Dawn,
the lawyer. Golden shields tell
their stories: Each woman killed
by gun or knife or fist, or ways
more unimaginable. The lonely woman
run down by her lover in his car,
the one shot by her dentist husband
as she held the hands of her two kids,
the one stabbed in front of the Court-
house as she went to get an Order for
Protection. Nothing saved them.
Not the love of their parents or
children, not their friends or
neighbors, not the courts or police.
These red figures, symbols of horror,
symbols of hope, help us keep
our promise to never forget their
lives, their stories; help us keep
our pledge to stop this carnage,
to make this world safe for all women.
When a room fills with Silent Witnesses,
all who have been there testify
that the spirits of these murdered
women--our dead mothers, sisters,
and daughters--are there with us.
Women, throughout the world, who
can't afford to make red figures
are given them by ardent volunteers.
Soon, no borough or county will lack
their presence, their determination
to change the world. They stand tall,
reminding us of the job to be done;
they march, reminding us that,
although dead, they will not be
stilled, they will not be stopped.
Nor will we be stopped, the living,
who mourn the loss of women we knew
and women we didn't know. We carry
them, our silent partners, as we
continue to work together in peace,
to heal and forgive, as we continue
to spread the fruit and seed of their
thwarted love and justice throughout
the universe until this killing ends.
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