Saturday, September 26, 2020

My City in the Time of COVID

I love random walks in forests made of pavement and shops. There is wonder to be found—and reimagined in ink—in spots where the wildest creature is human. But people watching while wandering New York City streets is not the safest of pleasures, in the time of COVID. Still, on cool days when my hospital dates end before the sun settles for the night, I delight in sightseeing The Bronx.

My city is an un-stilled picture of our never-ending fight for social justice,


a crystal canvas where we write and paint our brightest thoughts and feels.


My city is a haunting glimpse into doing what one can to survive—


some of the doing is splattered with feathers, rotting mud, and fouler things.


In the wilderness of bricks and hopes that is my city, zinnias bloom.

reflection
of disquieting times,
my city


for Poets and Storytellers United (Writers’ Pantry #39: Plums and feathers).

 

41 comments:

  1. It must be a strange thing indeed to be living in a city during these pandemic times, let alone one of the biggest and (normally) busiest in the world. (I live in a tiny, and so far COVID-free country town.) It looks quite beautiful and interesting in these photos, and I love that the zinnias are blooming happily.

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    1. It is weird, but in a good way. I've seen the number of bees increased, even the squirrels and chipmunks seem to be having more fun. The other days, a butterfly made it all the way to my balcony. And the birds, the birds are enjoying themselves!

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    2. I like people, but I really love the effect fewer people in the streets is already having on the environment.

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  2. No matter how much we love our city there are always places that show a darker side. I have always loved walking the back streets and alleys for an entirely different view...in daytime!

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  3. A very mindful journey through your concrete jungle XXX

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  4. What an inspiring haibun, Magaly! I enjoyed the images and reading about your city in the time of Covid, even though it is sad. I agree that wandering any city’s streets during the pandemic is not safe and we should leave people watching until it is. Not living in a city, I only know what it is like from social and other media. It seems grim, but I love the thought of zinnias blooming in the ‘wilderness of bricks and hopes’.

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    1. It is a bit strange, and quieter than usual. And interpersonal dynamics have changed so much. There are people who give you a nasty look if you give them their space--a lady called me racist when I moved away from her. And there are people who have no concept of social distancing. Strange times... Thank goodness for city-wild zinnias.

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  5. So happy to be a country boy. Well captured, MG!

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  6. I love how it turned poetic. Zinnias make me smile and I love them because they are so easy.

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  7. This is a sobering and almost haunting sight. But the zinnia that blooms and symbolizes endurance, brings hope. Thanks Maga for this glimpse into your city.

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    1. Nature is so good at blooming hope in unexpected places/times.

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  8. truly a reflection of these disquieting times. New York City will bounce back, as she always does.
    A good thing about the shutdown over here due to COVID (as if it can be good) is the abundant & unrestricted growth of wild flowers along the streets. usually all these are trimmed very efficiently. now we see butterflies along the streets.

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    1. Same here! Things are growing wild. And the bees (and I) couldn't be happier.

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  9. Oh, Magaly, it's special to walk the streets of your city with a poet's eye, and to be aware of the good, the bad and the ugly, and beyond that be able to capture it in words and take us along. Well done!

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  10. Great photos, Magaly! Thanks for sharing them with us.

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  11. This pricks and unsettles me--aliveness is startling against what has begun to feel like a slow building of a bunker around me.

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    1. One of my pastimes, these days, is people-watching from my balcony. I believe things would've been a lot worse, if I couldn't see people walking and going about their day--even if they do it swiftly.

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  12. What a wonderful reflection of your city, the heart you have for it, and the hope things can change for the better.

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  13. The signs of the times look a little different in the Philly 'burbs. But there are a few commonalities. Signs that recognize the seriousness of various struggles show up on t-shirts and lawns, the traffic patterns around the hospital are different than they used to be. I've spotted the first turning of the leaves in my neighborhood, but while nature seems ready to move on to the next thing, we're still lagging behind.

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    1. I shall take the thought of changing leaves with me...

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  14. This is amazing that your writer's mind can still linger through your city.
    For me my leaving the house are quick darts to the grocery or pharmacy or fruits sellers who vend on the street. With these darts i miss everything else its quick quick out in, no vibe

    Stay safe

    Much💓love

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    1. Here is to the return of the (healthy) vibes!

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  15. An artist's eye and poet's heart wrapped up in a lovely Magaly.

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  16. I love how you show us NYC / Bronx (my fave) in all its nutty crazy lovely proud glory. Cheers.

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  17. Making New York City look good is a special talent.

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  18. Nice pics...it is important to love where you live.Stay safe,

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  19. Thanks for showing your city with us! I love the photos! Big Hugs!

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    1. You're most welcome. So glad you love them. Sending you hugs and kisses!

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