November 22, 1963

For Open Link Night at dVerse I want to ask a question.  Do you know where you were this day–November 22, 1963?  For some the answer will be a glimmer in their parents’ eyes.  For some it will be a surge of hormones in their future parents’ loins.  For me, I know exactly where I was, and I expect most old enough do.  There are days that change us forever.  There are days that do not change so much as haunt us.  There are days that are landmarks by which orient the rest of our lives.  For those that know where they were, what kind of day was this for you?  For those not yet born, have you had such a day in your life?  Please share a bit of yourself today.

first child cries — nation cries– parents’ joyous sorrow

Unhappy Baby

About T A Smith

Just one of the literacy scholars on this site who wants to explore writing in all its complexities.
This entry was posted in Poetry, Senryu and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to November 22, 1963

  1. manicddaily says:

    No, November 22, 1963 was a formative day for me. I’ve written about it, but this has not been a very good time for posting for me–too much going on. I was in first grade. We all went out in the playground and cried basically.

    RFK’s assassination was another big one.

    I live in downtown NYC and my daughter was in school about 3-4 blocks from the WTC on 9/11 so, of course, it was a very intense day. I ran down to the scene to look for her. (She was fine.) But that really changed NYC and all of us.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      So many of these events have touched you. I’m humbled. I’m also very glad your daughter was fine. I can’t imagine the terror. Thank you for sharing these thoughts and for visiting me. I really appreciate your blog writing and your words here.

  2. caty says:

    I agree with most others…the comparable day would be Sept. 11 2001. I don’t think I’ll ever forget where I was that day. I wasn’t born yet when Kennedy was assassinated…but I know it was an unforgettable day for those that were.

  3. Brendan says:

    At elementary school. We were all called up to an auditorium where we all watched a single black-and-white TV with the news. It was one of those early media events that held the country together in a single astonishment, much as 9/11/01 did four decades later. I was seven; my younger brother, who is dead now, was in my mother’s womb.

    Have you heard of Steven King’s new novel, “11/22/63” that just came out? It wormholes back to that day from the pantry of a diner in Maine, allowing people to experience that moment first hand, always with the danger of coming back differently.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I had not heard of the King novel. I will definitely have to look for it. His premise makes perfect sense to me. There is no way any one could experience an event like that, especially first hand, and remain unchanged. Thank you so much for visiting and sharing your story.

  4. coalblack says:

    i was 8 years old, and my mother and older brother picked me up after school. my brother told me, but he was always screwing with my head, so i didn’t believe him for the longest while.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Thank you so much for sharing. Your’s is an interesting twist to most memories. Those brothers. I’m sure your mother was in shock. My understanding from my parents is that is was difficult to discuss, rather stunning and inconceivable to them. I appreciate you visiting and sharing your story.

  5. tashtoo says:

    I was in another realm when this event took place…but I have been held fascinated by the assassination, for whatever reason, since I was quite young. I have thesis crafted around my own opinions, file cards, cross references…so even though I was the unthought gleam…it was an event that shaped me…long after the fact.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I have a similar mild obsession to the assassination, but mine is a connection through birth. I was born that day, my parents’ first child. They collected local newspapers and later magazines about the event and the family. We’ve talked about it for years. I use it as a way to introduce myself now so that I am slightly more memorable than my face allows. I usually start with “I bet you know where you were the day I was born?” I’m having to change that now because so many people I meet are younger than me. You make me smile because I know you would know the answer to my altered question, “Do you know what happened November 22, 1963?” Thank you so much for reading and sharing.

  6. brian miller says:

    a few simple words there at the end, the mixed emotions…nice…
    9/11 would be the easy one…i was flying that day…emergency put down in atlanta and stranded
    Another would be Jan 28 when the challenger shuttle blew up…watching in science class as the 7 astronauts were killed…

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I remember January 28 as well. I was doing my student teaching when my supervising teacher called me out to tell me about the tragedy. Wow, you were in class watching it. That’s stunning. There was a teacher on board, right? I’d heard that her students saw it. I cannot imagine. Thank you for reading, commenting on the poem and sharing.

  7. vivinfrance says:

    Where was I? In Marlow, in my first married home, hugely pregnant with my second child, the first not yet a year old, totally insulated from world events, so with no idea of the significance of that date on the world stage.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Thank you for sharing. I’m sure the event did not echo as loudly around the world, but there was still a distant ringing. I had a similar situation with 9/11. I was online most of the day waiting for my parents to arrive. They called to say they weren’t coming because of the attack. I immediately thought one of them and become ill. My mother said, “What are you talking about? The United States has been attacked.” I didn’t leave the news channels for weeks. My husband was in Germany for work and I wasn’t sure when he would make it back. The earth tilted and I felt it, belatedly.

  8. claudia says:

    ugh..that was when kennedy was assassinated…? i wasn’t alive then but think the world changed..many such dates altered the trajectory of the world as we knew it.. 9/11 for sure is one as well

    • Yousei Hime says:

      You’re right. It was President Kennedy’s assassination. In many ways I think 9/11 has had a profounder effect. Definitely a more global influence. Thank you for reading and sharing.

  9. sandy says:

    Oh, yes I do. I know exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard the news.

  10. slpmartin says:

    That was indeed a sad day for many around the world.

  11. Mama Zen says:

    For me, I guess the comparable day would be September 11th.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Mama Zen,
      I think that’s true for everyone alive today in the U.S., maybe all around the world. Of course, we have our personal earth-moving days too, like when our children are born. Yes, it will be many years before there is a generation that does not associate September 11th with the events of 2001. For me, that date is also tied to my father’s death. My parents arrived late for a visit because of the attacks. A few short months later, my father passed away. It interests me how people associate things that are really connected. Thank you for reading and sharing.

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