Mason Daniels – A Collection of Poems about New York City

Jamaica Station

It all started here

We, confused and scared, move

as we turn to, what seemed to be safe,

an assuring officer.

There is a simple, yet complicated question to be answered,

that is, “Where is home?” I know that we are far from home,

But home takes up a new meaning when in a new place

This place is what we will call home for the next 10 days

The officer, who seemed just as scared as we,

Told us that we shouldn’t go to this place,

This is because it is not safe, he said that,

We shouldn’t go because we will most definitely be robbed.

I don’t know if it was the lack of sleep,

Or a crazy and confused mom,

We went, not knowing anything about this place,

and only knowing a name, Thomas Boyland.

Thomas Boyland

Thomas S. Boyland,

Thank you for the nights when the sky could cry onto you,

Your shoulder that supports so many,

and for the times when it was hard to walk, and quitting was near,

but you were always there supporting and guiding

Nothing about you was perfect or straight

The imperfection of your appearance made you

You are the best in Brooklyn.

People yell and fight on you, but you stand strong

Not only do you support the people in the city above,

but you comfort and protect the city underneath.

Inspiring how you can do all this.

You are not the safest, or the smartest, and certainly not the prettiest,

but you are like a good friend, always there.

You serve almost effortlessly, the joy and love that has been shared

is amazing. It is crazy to think that you are only concrete,

just the pavement beneath my feet,

and so again, I thank you Thomas Boyland for a good time.


Now after this Street we take a turn on Bergen,

here there is a man waiting to greet us,

and to inform us about our new home

He is charming, and nice, but his name… I have since forgotten.

He was a short, plump, and dark; man who had lived here most of his life

I could not understand why an officer should shame a place like this,

Yes maybe it smelt,  and you don’t want to touch anything because of the dirt,

but being scared of this place is hard.

We are staying at the top floor of a three story apartment building,

(Which is small for the city)

but a long way for a tired family with heavy luggage,

and still empty handed I dreaded this hike at the end of every day.

Tired from a long day outside,

This place was like a peaceful sanctuary from the chaos outside,

Here we could rest, and embrace the experiences from the day,

Here we could laugh and cry, and no one but each other would know.


A first subway,

You wouldn’t think that there would be a lot of people on the train,

at seven on a Saturday morning,

Back at home there is barely anyone awake at this time,

But not here in the “City that Never Sleeps.”

At the station there didn’t seem to be a lot of people,

but then moments before the train approached,

like a wave crashing over the stairs,

The people moved like water,

Trying to stay afloat in this sea of people was difficult.

When those train doors open they flooded in

Slipping into any little space left,

Drowning in people we had fifteen stops

You will only know the pain of being on a full train,

for fifteen stops if you experience it personally,

It is like the worst, tightest, car ride you’ve ever been on times ten

There are people touching every inch of your body,

and they don’t smell that good either.

I realized that this would be every morning.

49th Street

What a sight night can bring,

A musk of smoke and body fluids sit above.

There is almost a music from the cars,

an elegance in the never ending horn.

Walking up the stairs a light turned on,

but not from the sun, from a bulb,

This light seemed brighter than the sun,

For it was not just one bulb, but millions.

It is hard to distinguish the rain and the tears,

struck in awe we stand amazed,

It is magnificent, the magnitude and beauty,

It is never ending.

It is known as the “Crossroads of the World”

You can feel the ground beneath shake like a drum

Only a tourist could be found here,

Times Square.

Bushwick (M17)

The bus, a whole new problem to be solved. Another gateway to a new world, but the only difference here is that we can see the journey. We go to a place of ultimate creativity. Nothing that you can find at home. This Bushwick Collective is so bright, colorful, and authentic. A masterpiece, each from a different creator, no space between, there is no limit on their canvas.


What a place, it is amazing. People say that it is dangerous, which it can be, but these are the places that can be the most memorable. The disrespect, and hate that these people receive is enough to make a person break, but this is why they lean on each other. There is always someone to greet you, and lift you up. Never feel scared in a place like this, just give respect and honor. The harmony, and unity, is breathtaking. Attending a service like something I have never seen before. There was a spirit in the air driving the people together.


The Park, the greens of New York,

The ‘hustle and bustle’ seems to stop,

A nuance from the rest of the world,

A quiet peace lingers here.

The trees sway in the wind

How beautiful diversity can be,

The trees competing with the buildings,

People around who know how to breath

When night falls,

This becomes a completely different place

The trees seem taller, and the wind louder

People emerge from the bushes,

and it may not be the safest place at night

In New York City.

6th Ave.

What a show,

the synchronization of their legs should be impossible,

and the way they can move is mesmerizing,

A timeless show.

It has been going on for years,

A continual show showing to all,

It is not only the show though,

It is the spirit the room brings.

This holy and sacred place,

A church for all artists,

The stage waiting to be conquered

Making a dream reality.

This place hosting many,

It makes superstars,

Arguably the greatest talent comes from

The Rockets.

Mulberry Street

Ancestors from before reside here,

Their smooth, yet powerful, voice

It can only be from an Italian

The way they yell moves me

The amazing aroma that comes from this place,

It is like no other, the greatest,

Men, who beg for a customer,

so much competition for a restaurant

What journeys they made to be here,

A perfect example of freedom,

They made this place a home

Never ceasing to express their love,

It is love in its purest form,

The rich and famous meet here,

With the poor and weak,

but they not only meet they create,

They fuse ideas and make a masterpiece.


There is something special about this room,

because it, like the performers, were saved,

This theatre, that was run to the ground was ruined,

But it’s spirit never died,

Even with walls torn; anything can be made whole.

This is why they came here,

To restore art to its original beauty.

Bringing it back to its amazing grandeur,

Much like the performers inside,

They too are moving up,

As they practice, study, and execute,

Repetition is key to their success,

It shows in the performance,

All this work for one show,

I can see the work it took,

But I will never understand the pain,

What a show though.




                                          A small

                                          Ferry moves

            Through             The nasty waters,

            We are                Cold, wet and hungry

            Not the                Right way to approach such

            Solemn of           A place, and we don’t only travel

            To this place      But also to a place of pain,

Breathtaking, looking at the base of a statue,and looking into her eyes from afar, but yet you can still see pain from across the water, looking from the top of the Statue of Liberty, I can see Ellis Island, oh the suffering that happened for our freedom.


The Garden

Finally we made it,

I have been waiting for this day to come,

We have come to a place where the best performers play,

A room that is filled by some of the most powerful voices.

Madison Square Garden,

Solo shows, bands, comedians,

It is an iconic stage to express,

To show and spread the talents of the world,

To come and give entertainment to

New Yorkers, and tourists alike,

I have been dreaming of seeing a performance,

The one that I see today is amazing,

You see, it is a different entertainment,

The great game of basketball,

Such an iconic place we watch,

There is a different rhythm in the way they move.

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