Tag Archives: greenpoint

2 miles in Greenpoint (Change is Coming)

Encroaching development along Greenpoint’s northern waterfront has put me in a wistful mood. From the end of my block to the tip of Manhattan Avenue, plans are afoot (and almost approved) for glass towers that will fill the streets with thousands of cars and people, change the scale of the neighborhood, and cut long-time residents of this area off from the remarkable views of Manhattan that are currently  visible above buildings and along the water. A park will be built and another expanded, but just as I never wish to visit the sculpted lawns alongside the towers in Williamsburg, I can’t imagine wanting to find my plot of grass in the shadow of the new towers, this “Greenpoint Landing.” There is much to say about the folly of this development, from the inaccurate records that the approval process was built upon to the lack of infrastructure development planned to accompany this major change. In the neighborhood, people are fighting and organizing and I wish them the best of luck. I’m not hopeful anything can stop this work, however, and so, I began running again today along the streets that will soon be changed for good, the streets that filled me with such a sense of joy when I first arrived here.


Miles in Snow


I walked along the west side of Greenpoint yesterday afternoon in the fading sun and the colors thrown up by the snow against the bluest sky filled me with a kind of enduring joy.


I’m fairly mystical in a slightly pragmatic way, and so I put stock in the most mundane of miracles–the inevitability of meaningful coincidence, the repetition of all that is most important, and the appearance of signs. And so, while sitting on my fire escape yesterday evening  I had the pleasure of seeing a word literally being written before my eyes in the sky.

As premonitions go, it’s a fairly open-ended one. But I take all such things to heart, and wonder about the ways  I become closed-minded or inured to new experiences, and how to reverse the trend.

5 miles after Tropical Storm Irene

The locust tree outside my window was in motion for most of the weekend and I had to evacuate my fire escape of geraniums, but otherwise,  my Greenpoint perch and I survived Irene unscathed. On Sunday morning, I wandered up to Queensbridge Park to see the river. This particular park is slated for renovation which probably means that we will will  not be able to enjoy the view of grasses growing from a municipal structure for long.

In any case, I was pleased to see Robert Moses’ creation host to a pair with a giant kite that they tried, successfully, to get off the ground.

This park lies underneath the 59th Street Bridge, which was inspiration for the Simon and Garfunkle song, “Feelin’ Groovy.” I must admit that I’m growing more and more attached to these Queens waterfront spots, and the bridge views they provide.

Evidence of the storm was all around. Mostly, though, signs of any disturbance were fairly mundane in my immediate vicinity. The strange counter-factual falling of green leaves.

The gray sky lead to the discovery of formerly hidden colors in the park, though, and the imagining of more brilliant frescoes in years past.

Walking back, even Newtown Creek had a current to it.