Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Hot Dogs, Cotton Candy, Ferris Wheels – and Poetry?

Before there was Disneyland and Six Flags, there was Coney Island. Located on the southern end of the Borough of Brooklyn in New York City, Coney Island was the largest amusement park in the United States between 1880 and World War II. Today, the iconic park has two amusement complexes – Luna Park and Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park – and numerous entertainment sites not included in the two parks.

Its impact on American popular culture has been large. Consider root beer and the Coney Island hot dog. The roller coaster. The carousel. The area was one of the first to use new technologies like electric light. And the first baby incubator debuted there.

Coney Island is still a popular destination for New Yorkers and visitors, but it has changed considerably over the decades. It is also gaining a reputation for poetry.


In 2009, native New Yorker and poet Amanda Deutch organized a poetry festival for Coney Island. Seven years later, Deutch heads Parachute Literary Arts, a community arts organization that “celebrates poetry in Coney Island and makes poetry available to those who live and work in the Coney Island neighborhood.”

To continue reading, please see my post today at Tweetspeak Poetry.

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