The Native

 

There I stood, at the corner of 5th and Broadway, sifting through friends and foe.

The friends?

Common pedestrians promenading briskly, as if lightning had struck their heels with each step.

The foe?  

The lackadaisical sightseer, gradually making their way through the concrete jungle, equipped with camera in hand.

For this is a hustling city.

It is not to be bombarded with paparazzi, standing dim, amazed at the mountainous buildings  ahead of them.

New York is concerned with the passionate,

The go-getters,  

Not the folk that fall in love with its outer beauty.

One must grasp the complexity that is New York City in order for it to accept you.

Acclimate to the probable alarm of roaring traffic at budding hours of the morning,

Even before the early bird gets its worm.

Become acquainted with the malodorous stench of rotting waste and rat excrement that welcome you on the subway.

On occasion, consume the greasy goodness that is New York Pizza.

Relish the three hundred calories of sweet tomato and velvety cheese as it hits the roof of your mouth, spreading warmth and revealing what paradise truly is like.

Take joy in the ocean of people, a sea of various colors, each variable with a story of their own.

And though the outside world may be cold, the warmth that radiates inside you comes from the hearts and minds  to of each dedicated soul around.

The angry shell that covers those who dwell here are a mere cover for the golden heart that is inside each and every person.

Creativity flows through even the hardest of hearts.

In order to make it here, it must fester in your mind and soul.

The blessing of being a New Yorker doesn't come by being a mere native.

This place, the people, it's really a magnificent melting pot.

The pleasure comes from within,

The passion that burns so bright that you feel the heat in your bones,

A drive that is derived from experiences and making ends meet,

A love for all those, not just yourself,

This is how the city accepts you.

This is how the man you were is transformed into a brighter and more beautiful soul.

This is how you make it.

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My community
My country

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