New York

The Great City

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The place where a great city stands is not the place of stretch’d wharves, docks, manufactures, deposits of produce merely,
Nor the place of ceaseless salutes of new-comers or the anchor-lifters of the departing,
Nor the place of the tallest and costliest buildings or shops selling goods from the rest of the earth,
Nor the place of the best libraries and schools, nor the place where money is plentiest,
Nor the place of the most numerous population.

Where the city stands with the brawniest breed of orators and bards,
Where the city stands that is belov’d by these, and loves them in return and understands them,
Where no monuments exist to heroes but in the common words and deeds,
Where thrift is in its place, and prudence is in its place,
Where the men and women think lightly of the laws,
Where the slave ceases, and the master of slaves ceases,
Where the populace rise at once against the never-ending audacity of elected persons,
Where fierce men and women pour forth as the sea to the whistle of death pours its sweeping and unript waves,

Where outside authority enters always after the precedence of inside authority,
Where the citizen is always the head and ideal, and President, Mayor, Governor and what not, are agents for pay,
Where children are taught to be laws to themselves, and to depend on themselves,
Where equanimity is illustrated in affairs,
Where speculations on the soul are encouraged,
Where women walk in public processions in the streets the same as the men,
Where they enter the public assembly and take places the same as the men;
Where the city of the faithfulest friends stands,
Where the city of the cleanliness of the sexes stands,
Where the city of the healthiest fathers stands,
Where the city of the best-bodied mothers stands,
There the great city stands.

– Walt Whitman

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10th April – On This Day In History

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Born:

1915 Harry Morgan (actor – M*A*S*H, Dragnet)

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Died:

1993 Chris Hani (Secretary General of the South African Communist Party)

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On This Day:

1841 The New York Tribune begins publishing

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Have a good Tuesday, 10th April

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8th March – On This Day In History

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Born:

1977 James Van Der Beek (actor – Dawson’s Creek)

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Died:

1999 Joe DiMaggio (baseball player)

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On This Day:

1817 The founding of the New York Stock Exchange

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Have a good Thursday, 8th March

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26th February – On This Day In History

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Born:

1802 Victor Hugo (author – “Les Miserables”)

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Died:

2014 Frank Reed (singer – soul music)

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On This Day:

1993 World Trade Center, New York, is bombed (truck bomb in the parking garage)

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Have a good Monday, 26th February

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February Evening In New York

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As the stores close, a winter light
opens air to iris blue,
glint of frost through the smoke
grains of mica, salt of the sidewalk.
As the buildings close, released autonomous
feet pattern the streets
in hurry and stroll; balloon heads
drift and dive above them; the bodies
aren’t really there.
As the lights brighten, as the sky darkens,
a woman with crooked heels says to another woman
while they step along at a fair pace,
‘You know, I’m telling you, what I love best
is life. I love life! Even if I ever get
to be old and wheezy—or limp! You know?
Limping along?—I’d still … ‘ Out of hearing.
To the multiple disordered tones
of gears changing, a dance
to the compass points, out, four-way river.
Prospect of sky
wedged into avenues, left at the ends of streets,
west sky, east sky: more life tonight! A range
of open time at winter’s outskirts.

 

– Denise Levertov

 

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28th October – On This Day In History

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Born:

1914 Jonas Salk (creator of the Polio vaccine

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Died:

1998 Ted Hughes (British Poet Laureate) 

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On This Day:

1886 Statue of Liberty dedicated (by President Grover Cleveland) 

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Have a good Saturday, 28th October

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26th October – On This Day In History

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Born:

1983 Luke Watson (rugby player – South Africa)

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Died:

899 Alfred The Great (King of Wessex)

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On This Day:

1825 Erie Canal opens

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Have a good Thursday, 26th October

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