Poetry Friday: Subway poems

Poetry Friday is hosted by Jone at Check it Out
Riding the New York City subway system can be exhausting, terrifying, exciting and irritating (sometimes all three in the space of one voyage)…but  never boring.  I’ve been making the trek from Penn Station to 116th. St. and back for the last four days, and my writer’s notebook has blossomed with new entries and sketches to mine for writing ideas in the coming days and weeks.  Just today I was harangued by a Bible thumping preacher-dude, serenaded by an a capella troupe, treated to the break-up woes of a young lady seeking consolation from someone on the other end of her iphone, and a sweet lullaby sung by a loving mama into the ears of her very fretful baby – never a dull moment on the subway.   But, there was something missing from the whole subway experience – those wonderful bits of poetry one used to be able to catch a glimpse of in the midst of et another madcap subway ride…poems like this:
or this….
or this……

and this…

I had read that the MTA is aiming to bring these back… which will be welcome news to subway riders throughout the five boroughs and beyond!

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5 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: Subway poems

  1. It all sounds very exciting Tara. And the poems are beautiful. I took my students to NYC a few years ago & I don't remember seeing these up anywhere. How wonderful to have poetry on that daily trip! I hope you're having fun at the conference.

  2. Hi Tara, these are beautiful poems that you just shared. My ten year old daughter (and my husband) have been taking the MRT recently to school and back because our car has broken down – and she comes home with so many stories and vivid descriptions of people that she has observed in the train and the bus. I asked her to include those notes in her journal – what a gift, this eye of really 'seeing' things. I am glad you have enjoyed your time in the NY subways. I'm hoping to visit New York sometime in the middle of the year. That'd be exciting. 🙂

  3. I think every city should have a Poetry in Motion series. The editors did a great job deciding which poems to include… I think it helped changed some people's minds about the accessibility of poetry. And how exciting, your full writing notebook! Next time I hear someone complain about the subway, I'm going to tell them your story. 🙂

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