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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Poetic Verticalities: Ice-Skating, Nightstands by the Curb, Hair A-Z, The Highline

  • Author(s): Momchedjikova, Blagovesta
  • et al.

These poems attempt to capture our experiences of verticality in the city, as a daily practice. “Ice-skating” attempts to capture what it means to glide on the ice rink in the city and connect to things beyond the immediate present; “Nightstands by the Curb” records seeing two discarded nightstands by the side of the road and how in their loneliness they stand tall and significant despite the fact that their owner found them useless. In “Hair A-Z,” I list all possible variations of hair styles and accessories, as a way of seeing how hair makes us distinct, unique, tall in the city. “An Urban Riddle,” written in the voice of the elevated park, the High Line, in Manhattan, investigates what it may mean to have such an unusual green “presence” in the city. Each of these poems is paired with a photograph: some were taken on the occasion of the poem, like the ice-skating one, others, like the photographs by my friend Nikola Bradonjic—not, but we decided that they went well with the poems (the “Nightstands by the Curb” and “Hair A-Z” poems). The photograph accompanying “an Urban Riddle” is of a site-specific artwork, Broken Bridge II, by El Anatsui, which graced the High Line park from November 2012 until October 2013.

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