Sounds of the Resurrected Dead Man's Footsteps
"Surely those of us who were watching the TV coverage, say, of the events of September 11, felt there were no words for this. Poetry is a way to get beyond words - to find words for things that are inexpressible."
In times like these, we tend to turn to the arts, and especially poetry to help us come to terms with all that has happened. According to Marvin Bell, Iowa’s first Poet Laureate, art, no matter what form it takes, is always about what life feels like. And the feelings on September 11 went beyond words. Bell says that poetry uses the precision that is in language to get to things that are imprecise - it uses words to get beyond words. Americans had never experienced anything like the horrors of the September 11 attacks; words were hard to come by. Unable to sleep the night of September 11, Bell sat down to write Sounds of the Resurrected Dead Man’s Footsteps. He shared it with Living in Iowa in a private reading on the U of I campus.