MOTHER OF A COLUMBINE MURDERER

I watched a Ted Talk the other night. The speaker was the mother of Dylan Klebold, one of the columbine killers. It struck me that it must have taken a lot of courage to do this thing and gave me an insight into how it also affects the parents of killers such as this. I wrote this...

MOTHER OF A COLUMBINE MURDERER

With quaking voice the woman stood
in front of a thousand strong crowd
and she spoke of her son,
of the many wrongs he had done,
of his most heinous of crimes;
the taking of thirteen lives
not including his own
and the attempts on twenty four more.


She opened her talk with an apology, 
hand to her chest, heartfelt, genuine,
and as she did so she let her pain filled eyes
nervously drift across the crowd,
waiting, it seemed, to be vilified
but the crowd sat pensive,
contemplating her words.


She told of her own feelings of guilt,
of how deeply sorry she was,
for the trauma he had caused,
for the heartbreak, for the lives paused
and lost while they mourned,
of how her own loss just didn’t compare.
Then of the scorn aimed at her,
of the hateful words stormed by strangers


“What kind of mother was she?”
“How could she not realize that he 
was a psychopath, a mad man?”.
Strangers who chanted derision,
who felt justified in their assumption,
jibes and slurs that she knew 
she couldn’t or felt she shouldn't avoid.


She explained with conviction that
she had no knowledge of her son’s plans,
no clues of his intentions,
his sick mind had offered no indication.
She entered into the fog of depression 
and she knew upon hearing the news
that this would be her lot
for the rest of her days.


She moved on to the subject of mental health,
of the lack of research, the inexact science of it all
stating that had she known maybe, just maybe
she could have prevented the attack.
She said that she had always 
considered herself a good mother
but had since convinced herself that she had failed.


She made no excuses for her son’s acts
but pointed to the fact that he was disturbed
and she wondered still if she was to blame.
She called for gun laws to be changed. 
When she left the stage she left to applause.
She had, with honesty and integrity admitted her flaws,
but she had, she said, brought her son up with love,
“But love alone”, she said, “is sometimes not enough”.

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