Across the Harbor, Silver-Paced… and Soon Defaced?



Decades ago, Hart Crane wrote “To Brooklyn Bridge,” his most famous poem. “And Thee, across the harbor, silver-paced / As though the sun took step of thee, yet left / Some motion ever unspent in thy stride,– / Implicitly thy freedom staying thee!” Crane would be appalled to learn, then, that the Brooklyn Bridge will soon be blotted from view by an eighteen story commercial center. Historian David McCullough is appalled, and doing something about it: in this urgent, edgy, beautifully-filmed video made for the New York Times, McCullough implores the city, and Americans, to prevent the defacement of an historic treasure.

Jesse Nathan is an editor at McSweeney’s and the managing editor of the Best American Nonrequired Reading. His poetry and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in jubilat, the American Poetry Review, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Nation. He was born in Berkeley, grew up in Kansas, and lives now in San Francisco. More from this author →