2017-06-29 / Opinion

Newport Rounds the Half Turn


Let us lift up our glass, now that summer’s in full bloom,
Tourists descend, seeking views (with a room).

Here’s a mid-year report, unlike any you’ve seen,
With newsmakers and shakers on the rise in 2017.

And we don’t even mention the national scene,
News enough on Aquidneck Island, you know what I mean?

And the rest of Rhode Island so gubernatorial,
Makes writing like this mandatory tutorial.

From seven candidates sprouting like political Weeds,
(or political Paivas…trying to fill Senate needs).

To the Breakers Pit Stop and the Opera House,
Construction so much closer to filling the aisles.

To road work and architectural work,
Ongoing in a variety of styles.

To an amazing new classic car museum,
My Lord, you won’t believe ‘em IF you see ‘em!

To unruly students who almost got warrants,
(Personally, furtively, we blame the parents).

From who’s at a mansion, to yacht club expansion,
Here is the Tweet, the Gram, the lowdown, the buzz,
For the half year turn that just was.

A July primary and August Senate election looms,
And six losers, it dooms.

Allard, Euer, Florez, Hanos, Smith, Larson, and Ripoli,
Only ONE will be at the Statehouse eating a cannoli.

A huge antique car museum opened at Raytheon, so choice,
As showcases go, well, it’s a Rolls Royce.

The Newport Shipyard got the final go-ahead to expand,
Bringing much-needed revenue, by sea and by land.

No matter the subtraction, no matter the addition,
Newport police/fire pension funds remain in critical condition.

Put a call out to RIC! Put a call out to HARVARD!
No substitute teachers! Classes aren’t being COVERED!

The dearth of subs caused a school department rage,
So our towns voted to increase their daily wage.

They will need them to control students or fight them,
A packed house of teachers said students do everything but bite

After 54 years, the Crowleys sold LaForge to Nicholas Schorsch,
(Who also owns the Audrain Auto Museum; turn left at the Porsche).

After 60 years, St. Mary’s massive pipe organ cleared all distortions,
Its 30,000 pieces repaired; a project of Biblical proportions.

Summer high demand for liquor licenses, and low supply,
Luck, timing, bucks; acquiring them a sort of “Catcher in the Rye.”

Cell phone carriers cried, “Remove our tower and signals are all
done!” Yeah, hang it up, Verizon, or call 9-1-1.
Sewers still leak, schools crumble, the same annual dirge;
Mayor Winthrop asked, “Middletown, you want to merge?”

Not THAT again! We hear residents decry that addendum,
(They defeated regionalization overwhelmingly last state

A bike path will become reality to connect Newport’s south and
north ends,
And someday may reach Tiverton and Fall River, where the river

For major deck repairs, they squeezed the Pell Bridge into one lane,
Are they insane? Delays so bad it takes a week just to complain!

Middletown unanimously approved a new gun shop,
So, is that good news or bad for the beat-walking cop?

After years of savings lives, with both feet in the fire,
Fire chiefs Ronald Doire and Peter Connerton have decided to retire.

With June nearly ended, a week from the Fourth,
We can only imagine what will cut the next news cycle swarth.
If your notes you can’t remember. I will remind you in September.

James Merolla

Return to top