74,500 people die in an earthquake on October 8, 2005 in Pakistan. There are children buried under the weight of collapsed schools

“Village schools collapse, burying
children in earthquake rubble.” Ash and snow

shroud, delicate flakes
float into a stanza, black spots

on a  patchwork snow.
Mothers in hijabs dig through debris, cut

tamarisk trees, cook water
and Biriani rice. (I am just trying—

in a daydream—to step gently
over dead bodies).

The injured and the old. How curious,
they smile when they see an American.

They share photos of their missing
children. If aid does not arrive soon,

they will become winter’s buried angels.
They are like us, their muse

speaks to them about  pain,
in words now written in the snow.

Now the word disappears.

(Published in SD Writer’s Ink Anthology)