Parkland 17

Published 5:26 pm Friday, February 16, 2018

One troubled 19-year-old and

17 valentines unopened on Valentine’s Day,

17 eager young scholars lying still on the floor,

17 empty seats on school buses and cars,

17 puzzled dogs staring at doors, missing their beloved little masters,

17 unoccupied dinner places,

17 families without appetites or understanding,

17 beds that need be made no longer,

17 fresh, small graves in South Florida, moistened by the tears of America,

17 memorials of flowers spilling over sidewalks,

17 services of sobbing, shocked and wounded people,

17 years since five school shootings should have stopped it all, but

17 million dollars donated to the NRA by citizens over 17 years

bought politicians to promote their rights to own weapons of war.

17 times 17 school kids silenced by guns in schools since then…

2002: 17… How many more?

2003: 34… How many more?

2004; 51… How many more?

2005: 68… How many more?

2006: 85… How many more?

2007: 102… How many more?

2008: 119… How many more?

2009: 136… How many more?

2010: 153… How many more?

2011: 170… How many more?

2012: 187… How many more?

2013: 204… How many more?

2014: 221… How many more?

2015: 238… How many more?

2016: 255… How many more?

2017: 272… How many more?

Nine weeks into 2018: 289 plus 3…

Enough, 17 times 17 plus 3 times more than enough.

One is too many.

Stop it now, dear God.

So be it,

And so it is.

The Rev. Brian Crissey, Mill Spring