The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

carnivorous organisms

with 2 comments

Today’s post visits DUKBO, Down Under the Kosciuszko Bridge Onramp.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

An angle between neighborhoods, this spot is in Maspeth and Sunnyside and Blissville and Laurel Hill all at the same time. It’s alongside the Brooklyn Queens Expressway and the Queens leg of the 1.1 mile long Kosciuszko Bridge Complex and the Long Island Expressway. To the west lies Calvary Cemetery and its tomb legions, and it is known to all simply and aptly as Laurel Hill Blvd.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

One of the spots where Europeans originally settled in Queens, as early as the 1680′s there were farms and houses here, it is nevertheless a forgotten and desolate place seldom traveled to but rather through. In actuality, if you were to count all the humans who travelled by on any given day, the number would suggest one of the most crowded spots on the planet.

Luckily, local artisans have inscribed the spot.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Vast graffiti has been installed, decrying the clarion call of the outer boroughs upon the titan masonry of the bridge’s approach ramp. Epic wit emblazoned with such panache surely indicates the presence of a latter day bard here in this angle between neighborhoods.

Pithy expression, and the freedom to pursue it, indeed.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Happily, everything in Queens faces Manhattan these days, and on a clear day one might be able to discern this delicate missive from the Shining City if atmospheric and lighting conditions are just right. Also, the thought paid by the artist to those visiting the interred at Calvary must be heeded.

Imagine the joy of describing to your grandchild what the word “Scumbag” means as he stands in front of a loved ones grave.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Want to see something cool? June 2013 Walking Tours-

The Poison Cauldron- Saturday, June 15, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Atlas Obscura, tickets now on sale.

Kill Van Kull- Saturday, June 22, 2013
Staten Island walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Working Harbor Committee, tickets now on sale.

The Insalubrious Valley- Saturday, June 29, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Newtown Creek Alliance, tickets now on sale.

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2 Responses

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  1. In honor of the approaching national holiday: “Yankee Doodle went to London, Riding on a Pony, Stuck a Feather in his Cap and called it Scum.” [Interesting - no? - how the letters s-c-u-m are also found in the word "mucous". No one ever spray paints "mucous" on any pole or wall.]

    georgetheatheist . . . ebullient effluvium

    June 12, 2013 at 12:26 am

    • The power of the vileness of Anglo-Saxon derivatives! 4 letter words rule in that vileness. Fascinating etymology at work here: “scum” originates from the Middle English “scume” and is cognate with the German “Schaume” [foam] Why is seemingly the Anglo-Saxon synonymous with the Low Class? “Mucous” (also spelled “mucus”) is the Latin word for “snot” and that Latin “mucous” is possibly derivative from the Greek “mykter” (“nose”) and “myxa” (“slime”). And “snot” itself is Anglo-Saxon! The vileness of Anglo-Saxon derivatives. Quod erat demonstrandum.

      georgetheatheist . . . ebullient effluvium

      June 12, 2013 at 10:33 am


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