Bring Me Back to Boston MAG

December 16, 2009
By mercantile BRONZE, New Gloucester, Maine
mercantile BRONZE, New Gloucester, Maine
3 articles 0 photos 47 comments

Where I'm from is a stumbling line dance of crickets and tractors,
lonely lighthouses partnered with boats kept in step by the current
as the people are kept in the past by the pines.
Maine is maddeningly beautiful in its lifelessness, “the way life should be,”
if life is lumber yards and sea-smooth rocks.
It's a dry coast, shallow hills and salt air.
The ocean is a living thing, a monster of its own,
inescapable,
and Maine is its terminal trap.
I am an inland success story, a bent book spine in a library
down the East Coast.

Boston is a vicious lover.
The city rests, assuming and self-­assured,
on the broad shoulders of the Atlantic.
It's an unyielding orchestra.
It mimics the rhythm of tides in a ­thousand footsteps per second.
The subway flies like a bow over the ­underground strings of rails,
accompanied by a trumpet section of car horns.
We are the mismatched choirs of rebels without causes.

Boston is a war zone.
Chariot taxis and armadas of buses carry the militia day by day to the front lines
of charts and canvas, fires and messy apartments,
to the brink of reason.
We do not live here to be reasonable.
We mix our weekend battle cries with ambulance sirens.

And because Boston is ruthless,
every day we dig up the graveyards to ­retake Beacon Hill,
to defy gravity with skyscrapers, to rocket through the ground like the vastness of space.
Boston is the center of our galaxy,
making the Common and Copley and the Prudential planets, Cambridge our moon,
and every street a star in a spiderweb constellation.
We are a new breed of astronomers.

Boston is a trial made from a playground for monstrous heroes with twisting faces.
This city is where I stretch my legs,
my claws come out, and I am ferocity, still half in fetal position, but
growing into high heels and the pride of thrown-back shoulders.
We must outlive these bruised knees and blistered lips.
We exist now for the tongue and angry teeth.

We are animals.
Boston is our forest.
We stampede every inch of this territory every day; it's ours.
This city is where we try to cast spells over cash registers,
and pull card tricks from our sleeves,
like Boston is the ace of spades that will stretch that paycheck a few cents farther.
Boston is just wildness,
littered with pages of books our ­mothers used to read to us.
We are monsters hunting neon signs and light switches,
overcrowded parties and intoxication.

Boston is my stage.
I am reading cracked sidewalks
and building dance floors out of paper swans.
We dip and dodge and weave.
We backflip over the mundane
it has never been enough for our city.
We'll take nothing less than sundown to sunrise, broken-back spins and leaps,
like we think we can outdance the big screen
where we sneak into the second movie free, every time,
because we're poor kids in a college town, and if you can only live once,
you should be able to watch twice.

But Boston is my partner,
and I am a jealous sidekick.
Together we are ruthless, vicious, wild;
we are selfish lovers, bending buildings to our wills.
We are unshakable rooftops and pitch-black alley eyes.
If home is where the heart is,
then I'll never leave the downtown,
where we bleed from buildings.
Together we are glass and steel
with subway veins and a pulse of workday to nightlife.
We stretch out our victorious arms
and we are alive,
and we are home.


The author's comments:
After moving when I was 11, I never felt grounded or quite at home except for the occasional trips my family took to Boston (the only interesting place close enough to visit). When I finally got accepted to college there, it was one of the happiest days of my life. Moving in was another of those days. I instantly felt relieved and relaxed, like I belonged for once. For me, home has little to do with a house, community, school, family, or friends. Home for me is defined by the concrete and steel, the bright lights and trash of one place: Boston.

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This article has 4 comments.


on Feb. 1 2011 at 2:49 pm
awesomeaugust GOLD, Boston, Massachusetts
10 articles 0 photos 176 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground"
~Theordore Roosevelt

I live just outside of Boston, and I thought you did a great job catching the essence of it. It really is differnt from other cities- more of a long lost friend than a spot on a map. Thanks!

on Oct. 28 2010 at 4:48 pm
mysticforest BRONZE, Dunmore, Pennsylvania
3 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us."
-Walt Emerson



"I fear neither death nor pain." -Eowyn, lord of the rings

This was very interesting and i feel that i already know Boston, even though i haven't been there before. My french club is going to Boston this coming spring, i hope it compares to the beauty you described...keep on writing. please!

on May. 29 2010 at 2:54 pm
mercantile BRONZE, New Gloucester, Maine
3 articles 0 photos 47 comments
thank you very much! Boston truly is a city one can fall in love with. I hope you have a chance to visit it someday, it has a lot of history.

on Apr. 24 2010 at 1:40 pm
Christmas BRONZE, Orlando, Florida
3 articles 0 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
"We move from song to song, from lyric to lyric, from chord to chord. There is no ending here. It's an infinite playlist."

So I've never been to Boston before, but after reading this I feel like I've quite possibly fallen for it. You do an awesome job with the descriptions, it's really poetic (well duh, it is poetry for a reason), and gives a strong sense of nostalgia. Look forward to more!




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