nythroughthelens

nythroughthelens:

In remembrance. The World Trade Center Memorial. Financial District, New York City

I found two posts I made last year on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and as I opened the album that contained the photos that I took at the World Trade Center Memorial a week or so after it first opened it was hard to not feel the same emotion I felt when I was there. To say that it was a super emotional visit would be an understatement.

I am pasting the text of a post that I wrote after coming across a touching temporary memorial exhibit on the eve of 9/11  last year. The conclusion I reached is still the same and I don’t think I could write anything different that would express so succinctly how I feel about everything related to 9/11.

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I found myself in the vicinity of Ground Zero late last night. I hadn’t planned on going there and I didn’t intend to come back today to the same spot again. I certainly hadn’t planned on even posting about 9/11. However, I was bombarded with many emotions I had repressed over these past 10 years that came flowing out like an overflowing dam when I sat across from where the World Trade Center had once stood.

I came across one of the most beautiful public memorial exhibits for 9/11 while in the area. Called Tie a Ribbon of Remembrance, it is a temporary public art exhibit curated by Trinity Wall Street where the public was encouraged to write out their personal sentiments about 9-11 on white ribbons which were then tied to the fence at St. Paul’s Chapel, a chapel that has been standing in the same spot since 1766. St. Paul’s Chapel is Manhattan’s oldest public building in continuous use and also a place where George Washington once worshiped. It sits directly across from Ground Zero.

I walked along the thousands of white ribbons trying to hold each written thought in my hand and my thoughts went back the thoughts that ran through my head a few months after 9-11 every morning when I arrived at work 3 blocks away from Ground Zero. It was a transitional time in my own life, in New York City and in the whole world. I would get out of the train, look around slowly, swallow the inevitable lump in my throat and think that those of us who were lucky enough to still be here should celebrate the life we have and embrace every single moment with clarity, love and hope.

I stand by this sentiment 10 years later. We may never fully achieve the closure we seek in the wake of senseless atrocity but we can embrace the life we are lucky enough to experience every day and seek to find hope, peace and love through even the most trying moments.

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There are around 25 photos in the entire set (only 10 are allowed here on Tumblr). If you wish to see the entire set, I have put it up on my Google Plus profile in an album. You can view this album along with larger versions of the photos in this post here:

World Trade Center Memorial Photography by Vivienne Gucwa

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