City Trains

Another one I’d have on my wall if . . .

Breach of Close

I recently discovered a painting of the street I grew up on. You can’t actually see our family’s row house, but it’s only six buildings down from the corner depicted in the painting. The fact that an artist, even a local colorist, would choose to paint this particular corner is quite remarkable, considering I grew up in a small working-class city across the river from Manhattan with no claims to fame other than being the birthplace of baseball, the Tootsie Roll and Frank Sinatra.

No event of literary or political importance occurred on my street. No inventor’s house or point of assassination marks the block, no writer of note lived his first or last days here. There are statelier houses to the east, and more curious buildings, including Romanesque Revival fire stations, to the south. But 11th Street is wide and graced with a grassy, elm-shaded median, and the…

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