Ode to New York

I love my city

And I love my people

Some don’t quite know what to make of us

Angry, in a rush, rough, hard

Yes, we are hard

We are hard with heart

We were born in a city that’s as hard as its streets

We grew up in a city that is at times unforgiving

Is icy and tough

But alive and moving, sharp yet soothing

 Like bubbles in champagne

I love my city

And I love my people

We love like no one else

With a fierce loyalty

Unmoved even when most cannot see what’s to love

We love our city, steadfast

Even though many come and love her fleetingly

As a whore they claim momentarily for their own personal gain

Their own moments of satisfaction

To make it big as they say

To quench their own desires and dreams

And she gives and gives while the dreams take and take

I love her

For all that she was, all that she is

Always holding her true self close to chest

An exactness only few can see or could ever know

Even when she’s the next big thing

The place some dreamed to be

We love her

Not for what she is in our imaginings but what she has always been

Our mother of mothers

Our lessons, our danger, our safety, our beginnings

The very thing that shaped my eyes on life

I love my city

And I love my people

Hard in heart, taking after her in nature

We don’t love her like they do

We love her like some never could

Even when they think they do

We know each other when we see each other

Only a small exchange need occur

Maybe it’s the way we lean

The way we leave the g off our ‘ings’

Maybe it’s the way we never stare

Unless needing to actually speak

The way we rush along purposefully

But with a grace all at once

The way we say what you didn’t expect to hear

The way we know each other when we meet

Instant comradery

Instant knowing, our so called defenses down

We know all the spots they’re just discovering

The way we value our neighborhoods,

Each block holding a story, a cord to our pasts

Our childhoods embedded in the pavement you walk on

Quarter waters and fire hydrants, not pools

Water splashing on the concrete as we ran through

The way we understand our communities

The way we knew all our neighbors before they were ousted by rising rents

The next new thing, the cool place to live

Each neighborhood, one by one

Her body explored for convenience and opportunity

And still we love her

In the face of change, in the shadow of her transformation

To truly love is to love unreservedly

And so I love my city

And I love my people