Follow up to Writing Assignment #3

Ekphrastic poem is semi-done. The body is in place and the ideas are very close to what I want to say about the accompanying photo and furthers the narrative of Anywhere Avenue .

Once I work out the kinks, I will post it up for sure. Many thanks to Barb, Truong and my workshopmates for hitting me with the honest critique.

Re: My current process.
Lately, I’ve been focusing on the voice and tone of my speaker(s) but I am also trying to avoid cliché language and predictable stereotype. Recent efforts have been hit and miss but that’s the messy part of poetry for me and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Re: In the South Bronx Of America
I first came across Mel Rosenthal’s work last year as I was trying to find evidence of New York’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development efforts to beautify the Bronx by covering up abandoned tenement windows with cardboard depictions of flowers and open spaces. Just about the only photos I could find was Rosenthal’s photo essay on the Bronx of the 70s which is just gorgeous. Maybe not the word you would think when showing people drinking straight from a fire hydrant, mother and daughter posing by a demolition site, a man openly brandishing a bayonet or a young boy somersaulting onto a flimsy mattress in the street but that’s pretty much what I saw around me growing up (Ok, maybe not the dude with the bayonet but there were mad rumors of folks carrying machetes for protection)

Rosenthal, a Bronx native, also has a wonderful sarcastic side as he decided to place the following text alongside the pic you see here.

The Bronx has prime real estate that is affordable. No inflated prices like Westchester, New Jersey, or Long Island. The City of New York is planning to sell prime parcels of real estate for retail, light manufacturing, office and industrial development. These are properties which the city has held from sale until the market was right. Now the market is right. You can own real estate in thriving, busy commercial centers, industrial enclaves, and growing residential areas. (Text courtesy of NYC Dept of General Services)

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