Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren is declaring a state of emergency in the city to combat the recent uptick in violence.
The city has now logged a record 74 homicides this year.
-WXXI News, November 12, 2021
I wouldn’t take you to Chestnut Street
where two men were killed in their apartment
in the early hours of a November morning,
or to St. Paul Street where a 20-year-old
was beaten, or to North Street, where
a teenage girl was found shot. I would
take you to Highland Park, and we’d walk
past limbs of lilac bushes, and I’d admit
that no, they don’t look like much now,
bare twigs stuck in the hillside, and yes,
we are on the edge of winter, the months
when tires kick slush along the roadside,
everyone’s head is bent against the wind,
tattered Walmart bags and styrofoam cups
fly loose in the mid-February snowmelt.
But if you come back in spring you would see
how the buds of these lilacs unfold, how
nobody can resist their sweetness in May,
how we press our faces into the clusters
like pollen-crazy honeybees. I would take you
to the Public Market in August, and we’d buy
peaches on sale by the crateful at the end
of the morning and and you’d see how a girl
in a stroller with a long red balloon brushes
the backs of strangers’ arms in benediction,
how their faces are so beautiful in the light.
By Claire Buck