This was 12 years, 4 months, 16 days ago

The best part of the construction phase of buildings is, in my opinion, the stage where the structure of the building is set up, and and lights are hung up on each floor for construction purposes, the building turning into a lantern of sorts. But more than a lantern, the building's like a pastiche of the buildings that surround it, especially in manhattan, gridded incandescent bulbs mimicking the interplay and pseudorandom modulation of windows lit on and off that is so characteristic of these high rectangular buildings (demographics concerning race class age occupation life habits and etc etc scrunched up and flattened into this facade almost legible as a pattern or a script).

In the case of this building under construction it's all lights, there are no walls, and it's as if you're seeing straight through to what would be the undiluted heart and spirit of a building fully populated and alive. I imagine a wall moving into place at the finishing moment of construction, blocking views, closing off lights. This is the archetypal state of all-lights-on that maybe not its citizens but the building itself aspires to achieve, all-homes-habited, inhabitedness, lovedness. And so maybe at the start of its life each construction starts off so full, so noticed and worked on, but as time passes the wild vigor and excitement of newness mellows out as the building disappears (and its abnormally clean exterior finds some rainstreaks, practices its patina) and becomes absorbed in Benjamin's state of distraction, learns to smile serenely, waits to pass time by. Burning fire and lightbulbs are for an unfinished youth, it thinks. Meanwhile, a 22-year-old boy sits on a rooftop across the east river and stares at this youthful burning building, thinks of a poem, watches the cars drifting along FDR drive, hears himself move.