Jefferson Square

Dedicated In Pectore


I sit on the bench behind them.


They are a family of four.

The husband throws a ball to his wife

As gently as he can.

Their girl and boy run circles

Between them

Trying to intercept it.

They rarely do.


I watch the wife.


They are Muslim:

She is dressed

In that black and covering garb

Denoting modesty.

Her scarf and robe

Flutter all about her

In the wind.


I am a witness to their happiness.


After the simple game has run its course,

The children have gone off

Somewhere I cannot see.

The husband and wife sit under a tree

Some distance from me.

In the shade,

They are a silhouette of two, together.


I cannot move from the bench.

A tree shadow lengthens,

Then engulfs me.


Steven Golden

March 26, 2008

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