The face denies the hurt; they mask a smile
yet years of suffered loss show no relief.
The faces of the gas-masked worn awhile
by firemen-stunned below the Tower’s grief.
The smile denies the memory recalled:
that day we ran, white-faced, along the street.
Our skin and hair turned ashen, ag`ed all,
that day we ran, white-haired, along the street.
I turn away but looking back, I see
those wary, stricken eyes behind the mask;
those charging masses flee that destiny
yet bravely are they equal to the task.
The faces of New Yorkers make me proud:
with weathered soul; with courage their endowed.