From Reagan’s address after the Challenger explosion, January 28 1986


“Give me a challenge and I’ll meet it with joy”

Go back like a dog to where you put it,
a day for mourning and remembering,
Nancy and I

are pained to the core
the nation: this is truly a national loss.

Say something,
of America
it’s hard to dazzle us,
to ‘slip the surly bonds
of earth and touch the face of God:’

The crew
served all of us
pulling us

into the future: crying, stumbling, singing
I saw London, I saw France

The crew
we will never forget them
nor the last time
Your loved ones
that ‘lived by the sea, died on it, and were buried in it’

Timmy Straw is a writer, musician and translator (Russian) and a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Their poems appear in the Chicago Review, Poem-a-Day, Second Factory, The Volta and elsewhere, and their first book is forthcoming from Fonograf Editions.