Searching the city for the statue,
we found it expressionless in a cathedral,
a child holding the world out to anyone.
We had no money. We drank thin soup for lunch.
Gypsies laughed at tourists, while in bars skinheads
peered at other tables and did not speak. It was
how it was. Walking through Old Town Square,
we saw a man piss his name on cobblestones,
harsh consonants vanished with the vowels.
He stumbled, steadied himself against a wall.
Neither one of us said, Are you all right?
Some things are never misunderstood.
On Charles Bridge, the statues of saints left
shadows over a circle of those playing guitars.
A girl stood up and swayed in its radius.
We froze as she held out her hands,
palms open as if she might catch
the stars raining down on us all.
“The Statue” first appeared in Second Avenue Poetry, inaugural issue.