Greenpoint, October, 2015

Monday, June 8, 2015

Summer Series 2015: Monstrous Trucks!

That bittersweet moment. Classes done, grading in, commencement over. I'll be spending less time on the BQE, giving the work crews a little more space.
This summer's special series shines a little light on the big dogs of the road: trucks and truckers. Love 'em, hate 'em, secretly wish you were one... We'll start off with a short, exquisite poem from 1987 by Joseph Ceravolo, whose Collected Poems recently appeared from Wesleyan University Press.


A garbage truck across the road
turns into the traffic, the avenue
a burst of solar        blindness
It is the birthday of the universe.

Ceravolo was born in Astoria and lived in New Jersey. Perhaps that's why he wrote as frequently as he did about trucks--even that most unloved of trucks, the garbage truck.


  1. I hope the Research Bureau will look into the work of Mierle Laderman Ukeles. She is the official artist in residence for the NYC Dept. of Sanitation and has done (and continues to do) amazing artworks related to sanitation, including a garbage truck ballet. Check her out!

    1. Thanks for the tip. No pun intended!

  2. And something on those commercial garbage trucks you see roaring through the streets late at night, with guys hanging off the back, looking like kings of the city. The trucks always have good names too - Stallion, Vulcan and the like.

    1. Yes, let's hear it for the independents. A dissertation or two could be written about the names of garbage trucks. I also love the slogans. From my rural childhood: "There goes my everything!"

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