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This Writer Penned A Poem For Each Night She Went Over The Manhattan Bridge

"I rode across that bridge twice most days and would drink in the light, the view, the distance, each time it was available to me."

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Mary Austin Speaker is a 38-year-old poet currently living in Minneapolis, MN. Before moving to Minnesota, she spent 12 years living in New York City, where she fell in love with the Manhattan Bridge.

Photo by Chris Martin

"It's the constant that I returned to, regardless of what job I had, who I was dating, where I lived, for as long as I lived in New York," she told BuzzFeed.

When Speaker found out she'd be leaving New York, she decided to start writing poems during her daily commute on the subway ride across the bridge. The collection of poems is now a book, titled The Bridge.

Shearsman Books

"When I knew I was leaving New York, I picked up the habit of daily writing from my soon-to-be husband, Chris Martin, and endeavored to preserve my time in that bright, charged place by writing a poem that somehow mimicked my experience of being on the bridge, because I knew I would miss it most of all."

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"I rode across that bridge twice most days and would drink in the light, the view, the distance, each time it was available to me," Speaker explained. "And when it was dark, the quiet, the distant lights of the city, usually obscured by the city itself."

The author said her affinity for the bridge came from growing up in Texas, "where you can see for miles in any direction from so many places."

Courtesy of Shearsman Books

"[I] have always needed a place like that in order to form a connection to a new city."

Speaker says the reaction to the book, from current New Yorkers and people she knows who used to live in the city, is positive.

Courtesy of Shearsman Books

"Those who used to live in New York find it brings them back to a very familiar and beloved place. That is enough for me," the author said.

"But I think those who still live in New York might find the simultaneous exhilarating and exhaustive pace of the working life, the neat and rhythmic passage of time, reflected back to them."

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