Sunday, February 22, 2015

Week 8: Hometown

a not so old city map, letterpress printed with the title, Hometown
   The book-of-the-week for Week 8, Hometown, is a short poem about change as seen in the alteration of town. The foundation of the book... it's pages and background... is a recent city map. The landscape is pictured in the words... which were letterpress printed onto the map using 24-point Bookman type. A single photograph taken in 1959 of a landmark that no longer exists... is the only imagery other than the modern-day map. Question: is change progress or regress? Most of the time, a little of both.  

unfolded map... inside, an old photograph and the beginning of the poem
A close-up of the photograph and the first stanza
This is the poem...

Stomping grounds change
and where we were
isn't there anymore
except in our memory...
(which is slipping too)

A path we cut through
a pool where we splashed and played
and the Five and Dime... aisles we walked
eyes wide, taking in the glitter and shine

gone the wooden-floor roller rink,
where we wobbled through
all those little-girl birthday parties,
and the ballpark where we squinted
into the setting sun...
how could it now be gone?

just shadows now
streets still there
but changed somehow...
steel and glass towers scrape the sky
cute cafes with rattan chairs
and umbrella shades filling the lane
the shops we browsed for everything
moved... somewhere

Now there are new places
to see and be
it's someone else's
stomping ground
the poem... all spread out

   As the generations age, it's easy to track the changes in landscape... philosophy...  culture. Yet who can say exactly when does a generation stop and a new one begin? In some ways, the world is created new each day.. each minute.. each second.. and time is just another map... moving back and forth in a roadwork of being. 

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