The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

South Side part 3

with 2 comments


– photo by Mitch Waxman

There’s a public space along the Monongahela River in Pittsburgh’s South Side which is called ‘Color Park.’ The legend for this place, which officially opened in 2017, attributes its creation to a local artist named Baron Batch. Formerly, this was an industrial wasteland. Color Park encourages graffiti artists to come and paint here, and add their work to an ad hoc public gallery.

The park area is really nice, with waterfront views, and it’s ok to paint on the ground or any of the concrete surfaces within.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

This was my first visit, and I headed in the general direction of the Birmingham Bridge. A set of freight rail tracks defines one of the borders of the place, with the river providing another. The park was very well populated with lookie loos, bike riders, artists, and joggers.

One shambled forth, scuttling forward, always an outsider.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Across the river, on a prominence, those high rise buildings are a part of Duquesne University. The yellow bridge is called the South Tenth Street Bridge. My scuttling had resulted in carrying the desolate massing of my mortal frame to a spot which I had seen previously, so a change in direction was instituted and I headed out of the park and up to the local street grid surrounding it.

The neighborhood nearby Color Park, part of the South Side section, hosts a series of interesting late 19th and early 20th century homes and commercial buildings.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The ‘Color Park’ deal continues up on the streets, with several large warehouse buildings painted in primary colors. The prominence in the background is Mount Washington, and that spot where the TV broadcast antenna is visible is about a block away from one of the Inclines. It’s somewhere in the neighborhood of about a 1,000 feet change in elevation from where I was standing to that spot.

Scuttling, always scuttling, I moved forward.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Couldn’t help but crack out a few of the interplay between the primary color walls and the surroundings. One had reached his turnaround point, that moment in any walk where you decide that it’s time to start heading back towards the dwelling. In this case, I had taken the T light rail into town and left the car back at HQ, so I needed to get back to the T station so I could catch the ride which would carry my bloated carcass back to HQ.

More than once on this walk, a peculiar spasticity affected my face. The corners of my mouth cramped upwards, the eyeholes narrowed and brows arched, and the normal grimace reversed itself. A hideous imposture of what others might describe as a ‘smile’ wrote itself onto my visage. I’m glad of the fact that I was alone, and that no one saw me experiencing what might be considered an emotion. I caught a reflection of it in the silvered glass of a truck’s rear view mirror and was startled.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The walk wasn’t over yet, not by a long shot, but I gathered myself back together and reassured myself that this smiling thing was just a symptom of some as of yet undiscovered health condition. I mentally pictured burn victims and kids with cancer, which righted my mental ship back to darkness and dissolution. The spastic condition on my face disappeared and soon I was once again wearing the mask of the depressed and despondent, which is my normal state. A dark cloud on an otherwise sunny day, after all, am I. Just ask anyone, I’m the worst.

Back tomorrow.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Buy a book!

In the Shadows at Newtown Creek,” an 88 page softcover 8.5×11 magazine format photo book by Mitch Waxman, is now on sale at for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

April 20, 2023 at 11:00 am

Posted in newtown creek

2 Responses

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  1. You … the worst??? Hardly!


    April 20, 2023 at 11:10 am

  2. Looking at those photos, dare I say that not too many people would describe that as “a series of interesting late 19th and early 20th century homes and commercial buildings.” Lol Me too.

    I think maybe you began to feel at home in your new situation.


    April 23, 2023 at 8:44 pm

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