Nice Smell Zone on the Gowanus Expressway

Friday, August 29, 2014

Water Babies

Those aren't sunspots on the windshield or raindrops. They're signs of progress on repairing the center lanes of the Gowanus Expressway West. Sprinklers are set up for curing the newly poured concrete. In just 28 days or so we'll have new roadway. And the jersey barriers will be moved as another section gets ripped up....The cycle of birth and detour.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Baby Bump

Update on the morning's post ("Roll Out"). It's a speed-bump in the offing.
Not very high yet, or decorated with stripes. But an excellent idea, DOT.


Signs appeared on Monday morning.

That afternoon, this pair arrived:

More warnings:

Tuesday morning, a DOT guy was hosing down the red roller.

By Tuesday afternoon, it was all done. I don't know what they did.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Sun Struck

82nd St. station platform, 6 P.M., Monday, August 25. Finally, summer.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

For the Delights

Is it possible our summer series, In Poetry Motion, has yet to include an Emily Dickinson entry? But which one might speak to New Yorkers on their way to work or school, to play or pray? How about a little apartment hunting?
Julio Cortazar (from Around the Day in Eighty Worlds)
Too few the mornings be,
Too scant the nights.
No lodging can be had
For the delights
That come to earth to stay,
But no apartment find
And ride away.

Monday, August 25, 2014

International Star

Subway poems give way to subway realities. Or subway opportunities. Photo opportunities, that is.
Tourists flock to the platform's edge to photograph a rat on the tracks.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Caves of the Cavemen

The subway station
with its electric lights, pillars of steel, arches of cement,
   and trains -
quite an improvement on the caves of the cavemen;
but look! on this wall
a primitive drawing.

An underground gem from Charles Reznikoff's "Going To and From and Walking Up and Down," published in the collection By the Waters of Manhattan. I first encountered this book, and this poet, many years ago in a bookstore in Warsaw bookstore that maintained a shelf of highly miscellaneous used English- language books. I bought if for the cover alone--a design by Gilda Kuhlman, featuring her grainy photograph of the East River and East Side Drive (little knowing my beat would be the other side of the river).

Inside, Reznikoff's meditations on quotidian New York City life read as precursors to Frank O'Hara's Lunch Poems--only, you know, Jewish.