Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A Six-Foot-Wide Plow on a Four-Foot-Wide Sidewalk: A Photo Essay

Spring is here.  As the snow melts away it reveals what the Winter has hidden.  In the neighborhoods around Wesleyan University, the snow melt has revealed sidewalks lined with muddy ditches left behind by plows which scraped the snow from walkways during storms, but also scraped away wide swaths of turf and soil, leaving long dirty scars, torn tree roots and enormous piles of divots and dislodged sod and topsoil.

In Just-spring when the world is mud-lucious... -- e.e. cummings

Ah! ├ís the heart grows older 
It will come to such sights colder -- Gerard Manley Hopkins

WHAN that Aprille with his shoures soote 
The droghte  of Marche hath perced to the roote -- Geoffrey Chaucer

Snow melting when I left you, and I took/This fragile bone we’d found in melting snow -- Gjertrud Schnackenberg

And February was so long it lasted until March
And found us walking a path alone together -- Dar Williams

As trade has suddenly encroached upon a sacrament -- Emily Dickinson

And merry larks are ploughman's clocks  -- William Shakespeare

Up, up my soul.  This action is abominable -- Ogden Nash

Still the snow keeps its hold on the ground -- Dylan Thomas

Let them think twice before they use their powers
To blot out and drink up and sweep away -- Robert Frost


Anonymous said...

What are the lessons to be drawn? Use narrower plows? Plow more carefully? I think the phenomenon may have something to do with the prioritization of immediate gratification (snow-free passage) over avoidance of long-term damage and disfigurement. Cf. smoking, deficit spending, infidelity. Nice photo essay.

Anonymous said...

Snowplows commit agricultural appropriation!

Anonymous said...

Terrific, Ed.

"And still the pensive Spring returns - " E.D.

Anonymous said...

These sidewalks shown are plowed by Wesleyan building crews, not city. That should be mentioned in the article, place blame where it lies. And Wesleyan also replaced many sidewalks with asphalt - really unattractive- presumably as a cost savings measure. Wesleyan should be fined like any other private citizen who does not shovel the sidewalk in front of their home or in this case destroys the city right of way. Citizens are fined for leaving trash or lawn debris in the right of way this is no difference. Public works should look into this. Good post- really brings down the neighborhood. Hope its resolved.

Anonymous said...

All fixable. Nothing permanent.