The crowd was moving beyond the guardrail
and surging up and down in gleaming escalators
between the two unmatched exhibits
I was in the crowd and with the crowd
memories between the tracks of the trekking pilgrimage
statuesque in lived postures of waiting and looking.
At the eastern pole of the great museum lay
Mondrian. There was a tree in a Dutch backyard;
branchlets billowed a crisscross scandal until
with the lantern of his lifelong devotion
a surprise habit was to kiss Mrs. Ernst unlike
a monk, erring, earnest, in the back of a NY cab;
while at the western pole was to be beheld
the family album of Alfred Stieglitz –
not Venus not Diana emerging black and white
beside the dock in skinwet bathing suit,
or the two dignified old dames a-walk
down a country lane away from the horizon.
Choose: your home movie extracted lovingly
undamaged from the real? Or the concrete circumflex
of a node of apposite contraries?
What are we looking for in glasses?
"there is always something deeper, a little deeper,
in the waste places, along the roadsides"
It was a crystallization
of hope longed for, one
one, what was the number
of the archway
another little bit from "My Byzantium", written late 90s.