It’s A New Year In Queens With Some Old Problems
By MICHAEL SCHENKLER
As we look back to 2008 and forward to 2009, I share with you my modern day version of a poem written in 1822 by another Queens resident.
An Elmhurst resident, Clement Clark Moore, wrote what endures as perhaps the most well-known Christmas poem of the ages: A Visit From St. Nick. With apologies to Moore and his classic poem, I borrow from his work which is more popularly remembered as “Twas The Night Before Christmas,” for the final column I pen in 2008 to appear on New Year’s Day 2009.
To those who have spent the year with me and my column, to those who have shared my column for even a longer time and for those who are new to this page, may your holidays be bright and may the New Year bring only good news to you and yours.
A happy and healthy New Year to all!
Twas the Night before New Year, and throughout all of Queens,
Everyone was a-stirring, to calculate their means.
Coal had filled the stockings and the dreidel scored no gelt,
It was the economic nightmare throughout the borough being felt.
The people – more than 2 million – not secure of tomorrow,
Added, calculated and planned just to avoid great sorrow.
Twas a year filled with problems: the State was on the edge,
The MTA threatening increases, with the impact of a sledge.
The City not much better, service cuts were the game,
And 2009 comes in sadly with the economy to blame.
Then there was Madoff with a 50 billion loss for some locals,
Atop the auto industry, and finance world, and Treasury yokels.
And just when you’re thinking that things could get no worse,
The New York State Senate adds its politics, to the curse.
With Tony Seminerio in Queens and the Illinois Senate seat tale,
When we need a strong government, we find that it’s for sale.
And even when believing we have leaders that are near great,
Governor Eliot Spitzer resigned amidst prostitution-gate.
And good ol’ Mike Bloomberg as pure as you can mention,
Would gladly sell his soul, for a term limit extension
It’ll take more than Santa or Hanukkah Harry for that matter,
To bring back the equilibrium and quiet all the clatter.
It’ll take someone godlike, to bring closure to this drama,
And so it’s enter our hero, we greet President Obama.
On January 20 with our fate in his hands,
History and magic returns to our lands.
With a moment of greatness in a time of much stress,
We pray our new President, can clean up this mess.
No red suit this Santa, no bag filled with toys,
He’ll demand that we sacrifice; he’ll say it with poise.
He’ll face reality, he’ll curtail every fear.
We’ll all pull together for a Happy New Year!
So we say to our readers for this holiday season,
Good times are a comin’ if we just proceed with reason.
A wish for the people of Queens: may all your joys increase,
A wish for the people of the world: an everlasting peace.