June 9th

There is a patio at the Met,
just to the left
of the medieval galleries,

and it is marble, cool,
and very quiet,
abutting the library.

There are balconies above,
and wooden-boarded apertures
that dream they're windows.

In one of the balconies,
a sculpture gazes down,
painted wood the color

of flesh, as if human and
alive, noticing. Meanwhile,
at eye-level, stone figures

stand, regal, muscled,
naked or robed. This patio
would not have really been

this cool, this white. Here,
there are only two trees, casting
small mottled shadows on the floor.

I imagine Segovia, or whatever
Mediterranean place that row
of columns once belonged to:

there would be sky above, blue,
and birds chattering to each other,
and the scent of oranges in the air.

June 2004