for the Pulse 49*

Each precious child of God that was murdered at the Pulse nightclub on June 12, 2016.

Each precious child of God that was murdered at the Pulse nightclub on June 12, 2016

Feel the pulse

Rhythmic throbbing in heart, in veins

Pulse as a sign of life

A sign of being

Distorted into a site of horror

Feel the pulse

Of a life song stopped abruptly

A half melody turned to discord

Because they are here no more

Feel the pulse

Of pain too thick for words

Of sorrow as deep as the longing for belonging

Of questions formed in quietness—too sacred to speak

Feel the pulse

Of another pulse halted by hatred

Another pulse halted by the complicity of the silent

Another pulse

Another pulse

Another pulse

Another pulse

49 in total

another pulse lost among the chaos

Feel the pulse

In hands clasped in fear

In prayer

In worry

In despair

In anger

In sorrow

In hurt, seeking hope

Clenching candles that reflect the only light we see in these shadows

Feel the pulse

Imagine these

Reviled and dehumanized

Seeds planted

In the heart of the hateful

Seeds planted

In the heart of the othered

Both leading to violence

The violence of murdering what is not seen as valued

The Queer. The brown. The black.

The violence of self-contempt

Feel the pulse

And refuse to ignore

How unexceptional was this murder

How the violence takes different forms

But it happens

In the ignored erasures

In the ill-conceived words

Intersected with racismxenophobiasexism and more

At the kitchen table at the party at the school

In the church in the mosque in the temple in the synagogue

Saying “your pulse, your life, your being, your love is worthless”

Feel the pulse

Even your own








And as long as you must

For them.



*Naming the “Pulse 49” is a pushback against the erasure that does not name the unique and significant location of this tragedy. Where many are solely naming “Orlando” (and arguably, generalizing the offense), I want to emphasize the targeted nature of these murders and remember the space and lives that were violated.