the hot days, she, like many of our neighbors, would prop open her
front door and let whatever breeze existed waft in from the stairwell's
With so many opened doors our different lives
would also drift up and down the stairs, the sounds and smells and
conversations, the T.V. going, all weaving in and out making a village
out of thirty-five apartments.
One night, decades later
in a much smaller apartment building, I opened the door during a
non-stop heat wave, and a breeze blew in and as it came in, the cat ran
out, the cool of 100 year old marble floors and walls too much to
And soon that door, like Florence's, stayed open as the cat and I,
wandering the stairs in the middle of the night, listened to our
neighbors sleep, hummed along with all the air conditioners in the air
shaft and sat in the still and the silence.
miss the normalcy of open doors during hot days and sleepless nights,
and when my door is closed because the neighbors are awake, I miss my
MY PRIVATE CONEY presents IT WAS HER NEW YORK, the short stories that accompany the work-in-progress video and photo collection of the same name (myprivateconey.com - media link - IT WAS HER NEW YORK). The stories and the media explore the tender rubble that holds both my mother, Florence's and New York's soul as one disappears into old age and the other into gentrification. All are real observations and/or experiences with very little tall-tale telling.
Except when it makes the story better.
Please visit myprivateconey.com for additional information and sample works.