Central Park is closed until further notice. The park closed before Sandy arrived. It remains closed. The park sustained damage during the storm. The closing protects visitors from falling branches or trees. It allows park personnel the opportunity to clean the park.
Updates as to the progress of restoring Central Park appear on the park’s Web page. On the page today are photos of the damage. That includes the uprooting of a willow tree near Harlem Meer.
Immediately upon viewing the photo, I recalled that, a little over a year ago, I walked around Harlem Meer with my friend Peter Tibi. We passed this willow. I took a photo, not of the tree, but of its branches dipped into Harlem Meer. I wrote a poem – of sorts.
Now it stands, toppled. In no way does this compare to the loss of human life or the destruction of homes and the disruption of lives wrought by Sandy in New York, New Jersey, other parts of the United States, including Puerto Rico, Haiti, Cuba, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Canada, and Jamaica. Nor does it compare to such losses brought by Cyclone Nilam to brothers and sisters living on the Indian Ocean.
Still, the fall of the willow that I sought to capture in photo and words tugs at me, a reminder of the storm’s power and life’s fragility.
See you along the Trail.