General Poetry posted June 13, 2017 Chapters: 2 3 -3- 4... 

This work has reached the exceptional level
Free verse

A chapter in the book Patterns

New York City

by estory

It's not the light,
It's the light reflected in the windows
Of the skyscrapers

It's not the crowds,
It's the face in the people rushing passed you
On Fifth Avenue,
With all their shopping bags

In this city that never sleeps,
There is always somebody walking around,
Handing out leaflets to a protest rally in Union Square
Or predicting the end of the world,
Or just looking into the store windows

While the Empire State Building
And the George Washington Bridge
And the neon billboards of Time Square
Rise into the air above our heads
Like moons that never set

In this city where the Broadway theater patrons
Walk passed the bums sleeping in the doorways
Of the apartment buildings of the rich and famous
And the horse drawn carriages you see going around Central Park
Seem like ghosts of the nineteenth century

And the gargoyles staring down at you
From the parapets of the old town houses
Never speak of the things they've witnessed

From the observation deck of the World Trade Center
You can almost see the whole world,
The Moroccan restaurants and the French restaurants,
Little Italy and Chinatown and the United Nations,
The bars of Chelsea and Soho,
That bull outside of the stock exchange on Wall Street

Where the traders in their offices
Above the commuters
Buy and sell the companies we work for

And the homeless people ride the subway cars
Around and around the subway tunnels

While the lights of the Brooklyn bridge
Glitter in the East River
For the lovers on the promenade

Across Manhattan, across Brooklyn and Queens,
Staten Island and the Bronx,
People in all kinds of apartments
Tune in to all kinds of music,
Hip-hop and jazz, Fusion, Rock and Roll,
Classical music,
The news, the weather, public announcements,
Baseball games

And even though the World Series
Is something most of the world could care less about,
The ticker tape parades
Still make it seem like the center of the world.


In this poem, I wanted to create a sense of New York City, the diversity of it, the energy, the light and the shadows, the constant movement, the hopes and dreams, the success and failures in it. In many ways, New York is a microcosm of the world, of all our situations, all our struggles, all our contrasts and similarities. I wanted to capture something of the beauty, and the grit, the richness, and the poverty, of my home town, the city New Yorkers call the Only City, the one place where the whole world seems to come together in a single point. estory
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