Thursday, July 5, 2012
here, but if you have time for just three paragraphs, I share these, about and from the Bissinger essay:
In Buzz Bissinger’s case, the view from his childhood apartment on Central Park West provided a window on a changing New York City. Just as he loved the boyhood ritual of going to the park with his parents on Sundays, so he later loved the ritual of sitting with his dad in front of the living room window overlooking the park.Mr. Bissinger’s father died in 2001, his mother four months later, and when the rent zoomed from $2,700 a month to $7,000 to $10,000, he and his sister were forced to let go of their treasured home. Looking back now, he says he realized he never felt closer to his family than when they were sitting in the living room, looking out the picture window at the panorama of those 843 acres below.
Reading all this takes me back to a Central Park day I shared with my friend Rahna Reiko Rizzuto. In celebration of the book, then, in celebration of Andrew, Buzz, Brooks, and Reiko, and in celebration of warm summer days, I share (again) that poem here.“I thought we would last forever,” he writes. “In a way I cannot quite explain, I felt a sense of immortality because Central Park was immortal, that everything would always stay the same.”
UnassailableFrom where we stood, on the castle rockOf Central Park, Harlem was as near asTwenty years ago. EverythingBetween then and us was green.The pond turtles were stacked up like stonesOn stones. The trees were a day awayFrom shucking their own shells.The red wing of a black bird was like a handThat had been dealt, and we were the splendorSight we had given ourselves.Afterward, it was Amsterdam to Broadway,Columbus Circle down to the sweetRemembered squalor of Times Square,And on every corner: Song.The high hollows of the Peruvians,The mesquite of a jazz trombone,The Mennonites in hairnets and black sneakers.I wondered later whether we had becomeThe engine of concatenation,Two women made radical
With unappeasable want,The unassailable desire to remember.