treat the death of Joe Paterno as it would the death of a president, the rest of us go on living in the real valley of sorrow, where once a day someone is killed." />

The Real Valley Of Sorrow

January 26, 2012 |  by  |  Possible City  |  ,

Photo: Bradley Maule, Phillyskyline.com

As the Inquirer continues to treat the death of Joe Paterno as it would the death of a president, the rest of us go on living in the real valley of sorrow, where once a day someone is killed.

The real valley of sorrow, where this week two neighborhood shopkeepers, both immigrants, were executed.

The real valley of sorrow, the valley of the gun, the valley of silence, the valley of brutality, the valley of anger, the valley of cold blood.

The valley of orphans.

The valley of dead streets (even on warm nights), of dark streets, the valley of fear.

The valley of prison by right, prison by example, prison by coming-of-age.

The valley of sorrow eats away at all of us, eats our wonder, eats our desire, eats our passion, eats our confidence, eats our liberty, eats our potential, eats our hearts.

About the author

Nathaniel Popkin is co-founder of the Hidden City Daily and author of three books of non-fiction, including Philadelphia: Finding the Hidden City (with Peter Woodall and Joseph E.B. Elliott) and two novels, Everything is Borrowed and Lion and Leopard. He is co-editor of Who Will Speak for America, an anthology forthcoming in June 2018, and the senior writer of the film documentary "Philadelphia: The Great Experiment."



3 Comments


  1. Well done.

  2. Very well expressed. The level of general acceptance of this abominable condition, despite NYC’s showing the path to reduction/ improvement is nothing short of an outrage.

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