Plain in the city

A plain Quaker folk singer with a Juris Doctorate in his back pocket, salt in his blood, and a set of currach oars in the closet, Ulleann Pipes under his arm, guitar on his back, Anglo Irish baggage, wandering through New York City ... in constant amaze. Statement of Faithfulness. As a member of the Quaker Bloggers Ad Hoc Committee I affirm that I will be faithful to the Book of Discipline of my Meeting 15th Street Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Becoming old in New York...

Becoming old in New York happens too soon.

Becoming old in New York means knocking on a thousand and one unanswered doors a day
and the thousand and first breaks your heart.

Becoming old in New York means listening to the clock tick 64,801 times a day, and that last second wont stop ringing in your ears.

Becoming old in New York is to have all your careers yanked out from under you, and very few people honest enough to look you in the eye and say, face it ... you're over the hill.

Becoming old in New York is to have your talents no longer worth the heart's blood they cost you.

Becoming old in New York, is to join the parade of old folks wandering on the street looking for something, anything, looking away when your eyes meet and you see the same look that is in your heart.

Becoming old in New York is having nothing of worth and value for anyone, when all around you ... well, you are the once new car, that got traded while new, then traded again with a dent or two, and the rust is showing a bit, and it runs with a certain dependability, but is now sitting on the scrap heap waiting to for the joy of being crushed and melted down...

looking down at the comments on your blog and seeing that you have stopped speaking to any other heart, even your own...

Being old in New York, is not giving up on yourself, but the world giving up on you.


At 10:47 AM, Blogger Larry said...

Let's face it, friend. NY is a young person's city. If you're not young, why stay? Family? friends? Are you afraid of change?

Anywhere else in the country: it's cheaper to live. Are you rich?

There are plenty of places down here where you're not in a ghetto, where young people respect you and call your sir or ma'am.

The pressure is off: why stay in the fast lane with an old car?

In China age is (or at least was) highly respected. If being respected means anything to you, you're in the wrong place, and you don't have to go to China.

At 5:26 AM, Blogger Lorcan said...

Don't your questions point to the problem? Yes in fact, there are reasons I am tied to this place, so I watch as young people claim my place that used to be for everyone.

I grew up in a neighborhood of small shops and families... and watched my generation slowly driven out, my folk culture driven out... and here I am, a ghost of that world, making young people uneasy by my haunting their streets.

At 8:12 AM, Blogger Lorcan said...

And... the great folly of the cruelty of youth... even in a city claimed by the young... is that some day, they will be old, and may be a phantom exile in the world they helped to create...


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