ELIJAH’S VIOLIN A poem in memory of Elijah McClain, February 25, 1996 – August 24, 2019
This afternoon I’m taking a break from making lists of what I think needs to be done in order to fix what’s wrong with the world.
I wish Elijah were still alive, toting his violin to the animal shelter as he often did, to soothe the kittens—when he saw their fear, this was his simple, kind gesture.
Had Elijah been read to as a child, he likely knew the story of the Jewish fairy tale, about children who learned to overcome fear through the power of music?
He would have known of his namesake, the ancient prophet Elijah and his magical violin that had the power to calm, and to release the secret melodies of the heart.
Had he taken his violin with him that evening on his walk to the corner store, it might have saved his life.
It might have signaled to those men who murdered him that he was not a rapist, marauder, or thief.
They might then, have taken a minute to understand that he had simply walked to the corner store to buy some iced tea.
Jean Cassidy, August 6, 2020 Asheville, North Carolina
(August 2020 is the 75th anniversary month of both Hiroshima and Nagasaki – We remember)