New York State of Mind

It’s taking me longer than I’d hoped to map out “The Trinketeer,” seeing as it’s going to be multiple posts, so, in the meantime, here is another poem I wrote in a creative writing class.

Where tired ships laid anchors
from a long treacherous journey
across icy uncertain waters
and weary travelers disembarked
spurred on by Lady Liberty
with her eternally hopeful flame—
the promise of a better life
through the threshold of a golden door.

Fishermen shouting on crowded streets,
hagglers arguing for the best price.
A nickel, a dime, a quarter, a favor…
The clip clop of horses’ hooves

along the cobblestone streets
and the squeaky creak of the carriage wheels
as it lags behind its majestic leader.
Smoke billows out from factories
where new arrivals work tirelessly
to feed four tiny mouths
in a ramshackle dusty kitchen.

Parrots preen on Broadway
Wolverines flock Fifth Avenue
Clydesdales prance over Bowery.
Lions prowl the Bridge
stalking newfound prey.
It’s a whirlwind of tangled thickets

and twisted trails of trepidation.
As a newcomer to the jungle,
you must be sharp, keen, unafraid.
But, as the old saying goes:
If you can make it here…

A symphony of taxi horns

serenade the streets.
Shoppers crowd the sidewalks.
and scalpers corner unsuspecting tourists
unfamiliar with their tricks.
Flashing neon lights dance to the beat
of the music of the city

pouring through every window.
An electric spark fills the air
on an island alive with activity
in an otherwise silent night.

So many yearn to take a bite
to peal back the skin that veils it
and sink their teeth into
the ripe possibilities of that elusive fruit.

O NYC
the city of opportunity
of lawyers, and actors,
of moguls and mongrels.
The center of the universe
where rebels are born and
old selves left in dust
true desires free to reign.

 

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