– As published in Okanagan Life Magazine

So much can happen in 10 years. As a magazine writer, there are times that I struggle to find the right subject, words and emotions to create a column worthy of your time. As a songwriter, the words and emotions seem to come together much quicker as my brain accepts and craves melodies that seem to make sense of this paradoxical world.

I have returned to a song written 10 years ago about the 9-11 disaster because it has replayed itself thousands of times in my head. Life is — fragile.

These are the original lyrics, just as it was recorded on Sept. 11, 2001, in Keith Hunter’s studio in Kelowna.

Fragile
Music & lyrics by John Paul Byrne

September morn, my plane is on its way,
East Coast neighbours start a brand new day.
The man with knives believes that he is strong,
He is mistaken defines right and wrong.

Young mom: Cell phone’s last dial,
“They’ve taken us for awhile.
I miss you darling and I want to go home.”
Flight plans already been filed.
We’re fragile.

I’m in my office — it’s my working place.
A silver bird is closing in my space.
Am I a target — I’m society.
Why won’t he turn, it’s like he’s coming for me.

“I’ve called to say they planned it,
taken life for granted.
I’m trapped here darling and I want to go home.”
“I love you’s” now being filed.
We’re fragile.

We’re fragile,
So fragile.

Here we come, salvation’s with my son.
Here we are, freedom’s shining star.
Why the hate? Unsure of our fate,
Wish with all your might,
Then try to make it right.

The call came in,
I’m heading up the stairs
to help the hurt,
Provide much needed care.
Can’t believe destruction’s come this way.
The last time, I’ll see my daughter’s face.

I can’t understand it,
Taken life for granted
“I miss my family and I’m so all alone.”
Humanity is now on trial—
We’re fragile.

We’re fragile,
We’re fragile,
We’re fragile.