The work of firemen

It turns out Fahrenheit 451 is the 7th most checked out book from the New York Public Library. I found this tad bit of information out last weekend while I was there.

And this wall, at the entrance of the Rose Main Reading Room, shown a familiar resemblance. The juxtaposed fire hose and rows of volumes stood as living renditions of what Bradbury would call Fahrenheit 451.

Tourists, in attempts to capture the murals above, overlooked this quiet representation. It was seen yet not seen, noticed yet ignored, yet it held presence.

“Montag hesitated. ‘Was — was it always like this? The firehouse, our work? I mean, well, once upon a time…didn’t firemen prevent fires rather than stoke them up and get them going?'”

Reassure me, Faber

I’m in the midst of reading Fahrenheit 451, one of the books I picked up at the farmers market a week or so ago, and it has been making quite the impression on me.

This past weekend, I forgot my drawing pen and misplaced my headphones for my trip to NYC, so I decided to improvise — I would read in times I would usually rely on these two. That meant a lot of reading on the train.

Within the novel, I’m currently where Montag is on his way back home after having reunited with Faber. Faber has just given Montag a Seashell Radio in order to give him advice and help navigate Montag through upcoming challenges.

Walking home, Montag expresses:

“Faber?…I’m not thinking. I’m just doing like I’m told, like always. You said get the money and I got it. I didn’t really think of it myself. When do I start working things out on my own?”

“You’ve started already, by saying what you just said. You’ll have to take me on faith.”

“I don’t want to change sides and just be told what to do. There’s no reason to change if I do that.”

Montag’s words to Faber reminded me of my own from two years ago when I first moved to Boston:

“Trusting that I’m in good hands and that he’ll (God) bring me back to life — but I want a new one. Don’t want to return to the old. That would disprove my point.”

The “point” I was referring to was that of autonomy. Now, with being away from home and all things familiar, I wanted to get to a mental space where I knew who I was and what I stood for.

I wanted to make sure all this change was not in vain. To end up in place similar to the one was attempting to leave felt pointless. All Montag and I had left was our dependence on our sovereign source and to keep walking.

There goes my hero

Because we can all get a kick from this kid’s winter adventure. He put himself through it and yet held on ’til the end.

A kid at Bryant Park in NYC this past weekend.

The best part was hearing him scream as he spun. What a day.

Street poetry

I was about to cross the street when I noticed a pattern all too familiar — 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables. A haiku.

I was taken aback and, out of excitement, pulled my friend out of traffic for her to see it. I was ecstatic.

You see, haiku have been a thing. I wrote three of them the day before and was already in the practice of counting my thoughts’ syllables. Now, the syllables were in front of me.

This haiku is by John Morse and is part of the NYC Department of Transportation’s Curbside Haiku, a safety education program and public art campaign that’s dispersed throughout the city.

It was a weekend of poetry, and I could not have been happier.

Counting syllables

I wrote three haiku this morning, the most I’ve ever written in a day (I’m still surprised myself). They all came out of my journey to NYC today.

I was hesitant to leave the house without my camera out of fear that I’d be missing out on the opportunity to take some cool pics, but something inside me didn’t want to.

my inner writer
doesn’t want to take pictures
she just wants to write

Because I was running late, I was half-expecting (or more so convinced) that I wouldn’t make it to the bus terminal in time. I thought I had two more stops to go.

it’s one stop away
that alone gave me some hope
as long as I ran

I made it (with literally a minute to spare, no lie) and settled in. An hour into the trip, I began writing and came across a blog post that got me thinking.

I tend to latch on
to things I do not want
out of fear of loss

Interestingly enough, I came across this and the morning went full circle.

@davidshrigley