There’s new construction going all over the Brooklyn neighborhoods where I spend my time. The next block of my street scarcely has two of the commercial buildings that were there three years ago. There are towers pushing up along the river, and ringing McCarren Park.
It’s easy to feel angry and scared about the change, and the ugliness, but the other day as I was walking past the building site for some luxury glass condos, Fishing in the Morning by Dar Williams came on to my headphones:
Let’s go fishing in the morning,
Just like we’ve always gone,
You can come inside and wake me up,
We’ll pack and leave by dawn…
And you’ll say I hear something,
And I’ll say never you mind,
It’s just our two poles knocking in the back seat,
And your truck is running fine, today, and everything is fine.
Listening to the lyrics, I looked up at the open structure and saw workmen, so high up that they looked like tiny ink drawings of men, or miniature dolls. Instead of feeling bitter or sad, I was filled with the sense that the steel beams have something useful to say about the relentlessness of change, and that the men perched on the metal bones were showing me the smallness and perfection of each life.
We’re two fishing poles in the back seat,
We’re the rolling on and on…