“All human life has its seasons, and no one’s personal chaos can be permanent: winter, after all does not last forever does it? There is summer, too, and spring, and though sometimes when branches stay dark and the earth cracks with ice, one thinks they will never come, that spring, that summer, but they do, and always." T.Capote
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September 5, 2001
Dawn: night, aurora, memory: all are words used to describe my name. My name, betrothed to me before birth. It is an unbroken promise between best friends; a name that has lived through death. Like the brilliant golden sun, embracing the sky with a majestic fiery glow, colors so rich they are inescapable from your stare, and as you focus on the massive fireball, the light grows like an enraged forest fire.
It is a name given to me by my mother, in tribute to her best friend. A friend so true, she sacrificed her life to save another’s. Valor one could only dream of possessing, like a soldier in battle. A girl like that I would have liked to have met; so free, so innocent, and bursting with dreams, like shining stars.
Although she passed on 26 years ago at the mere age of 13, her memory lives on, and will never be forgotten so long as I live. My name, a promise a young girl made to her lost best friend…for saving her life. Tragedy, like the black of night, only to be erased by the onset of an early Dawn.
Therefore, my name is also a reminder of injustice, as cold as ice on a window; for memory of Dawn is not easily rested. Her murder, never solved, remains a wound never healed. My name, an example of life’s unfairness, of our government’s imperfections, and the long crusade for justice. A harsh reality oftentimes disregarded, or overlooked.
To my mother, my name means hope and inspiration. It has given her the courage to re-live her experience, like ripping open a scab that could never quite heal. One of these days I hope my name will mean triumph and justice. So the people hurt by this tragic death will be able to close the window that has let the frosty air nip at them for so many long years. And be able to gaze from that window, engulfed by the warmth of Her presence, consummate and reminiscent, like exploring timeless pictures within a momentous photo album. By then, my mother’s wounds will have healed; scarred over to remind her of the pain endured.