Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Black Tears



They call this "Black Tears".

In reality, it small amounts of oil still leaking from the Arizona years after she was sunk at Pearl Harbor.

I shouldn't have been surprised at the tears. Mine had been welling up all morning. Why should the Arizona not share her tears with us as we strolled above her?



You think you know. You think you are going to see a war memorial. You know you will see names and ships. You think you know.



I take lots of pictures, but above the Arizona, I just couldn't. It seemed wrong somehow. So I listened to the voices tell me about that day.

And I cried.



Visiting Pearl Harbor was a powerful experience. If you go, spend the $7.00 and take the audio tour. Listening to the story, hearing the voices of survivors, seeing the ship....I still can't wrap my head around it or share it. I don't have the words. 

But trust me, you should do it.....


16 comments:

  1. Goosebumps run up and down my body as I read your words.

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  2. Thanks for sharing, Deb. My son, daughter-in-law were there last year & said similar things. My uncle was in the navy, talked with such anger about that attack.

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  3. Thank you for sharing this. I think I'd heard of black tears before, but it was too far away in my memory. Some things should not be tucked too far away. We have to remember. Do you think if students could see this and listen that they would have an appreciation and understanding deep enough to be meaningful? I would hope so. Is there anything online like this?

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    1. I'm hoping it makes a difference, Donna. I am using this visit as my personal experience speech example. So far, as I talk, the kids are interested. And more and more of the day becomes articulate...does that make sense? As I talk with kids, the words are coming

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    2. It's just so powerful, and we are so prone to forget that these young people coming up have none of the memory background that we have. Even 9-11 is not something these kids have knowledge of now. They weren't born yet or were under the age of 4. They don't even know what impact it had on our day to day lives. They take so much for granted.
      I hope you post about some of the reactions to your speech. It would be interesting to hear their thoughts. Again, thanks for posting this. Now I really want to go back to Hawaii. I never got to the memorial.

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  4. Thank you for sharing. I felt the same way at the Vietnam Memorial. Standing there, staring at the wall, I was just overcome.

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  5. The memorials mean so much more when you are there and you hear the stories. More than what we have seen or read in movies and books. Being there adds the emotional element. Very powerful. I have never heard of the "black tears" and would only guess that all the leaking would be done ... that is amazing.

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  6. Black tears, that ghostly ship, and those names...this must have been a powerful experience, Deb.

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  7. I visited Pearl Harbor back in 2002. Not a single December 7th has passed since 2002 where I haven't stopped and thought back to that fateful day. I cannot imagine the horror everyone must have felt when they woke up to the bombing.

    Thanks for sharing this very powerful post, Deb.

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  8. Deb, your words and pictures brought back so many memories. I agree that taking pictures seemed disrespectful and I too just listened. I found it amazing that even with the amount of people at the memorial, it was quiet and there was a peacefulness in spite of the tragedy that happened so many years ago. This history is so important for our children to learn, I only hope that your words will help them understand. Thanks for sharing and helping me remember.

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  9. Here's an underwater video done well, with black tears at the end:
    http://imagesofrenewal.com/pearl-harbor/the-oil-from-the-uss-arizona-the-black-tears/

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  10. Your hook with the "black tears" just set the perfect tone. I visited Pearl Harbor in middle school and still remember it. I don't think there was an audiotour then though -- if I go back, I'll remember that you recommend it! While we were in Hawaii, I also got to visit the 4th Marine Division base where my Grandaddy trained, as well as a black sand beach that helped me understand what fighting on Iwo Jima would have been like for him... incredible.

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  11. Black Tears, how sadly perfect Deb. What an important visit. I agree. You never know how a trip like that will affect you.

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  12. Omaha Beach feels like that too. I wish every American could stand on those spots and feel the price of freedom.

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    1. Sorry, Deb, that was me, unknowingly had Zack's account open on my iPad .

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