We Knew Her Too

A poetic tribute to Somer Thompson, the seven-year-old who was taken from Orange Park, Florida and found dead in a landfill in Georgia. Rest in peace, beautiful.

I was not there upon her birth,

To sooth her dreams

Or quench her thirst.

I did not see her first scraped knee

Or give a magic kiss to heal.

It was not my task to clean her clothes,

To brush her hair or cook her meals.

Her tiny hand, I did not hold,

Those bedtime stories, I never told.

No blanket draped when she was cold,

This child twas not mine to hold.

But every breath my brother takes,

And every step my cousin makes,

I see that Somer, sweet and rare,

Every time I brush their hair.

I never knew her sun or shine,

But I know enough, like she were mine.

Her mother's pain, unfathomable true,

But in some small way, we know her too.

She's in the way our daughters smile,

The way our sons run through the hall,

The nerves our siblings poke and prod,

The names on our attendance call.

All of you who knows how it feels,

To love a child more than yourself;

Somer's in our hearts as much

As the pictures on our walls and shelves.

I was not there to wipe her tears,

Nor play peek-a-boo or chase,

But we know her and we know that fear,

To see a flyer with our baby's face.

I never knew her sun or shine,

But I know enough, like she were mine.

Though words to express are far and few,

For that little girl I wish I knew.

Oh, Somer, though your name is new,

In our prayers, we know you too.