In the shadow of the Arsenal

... so then the tattoo-spell passes.  Bluejay & Henry look up, note their surroundings.  We are back behind Shakespeare's Head, in old historic Providence.  The legacy of the past is pain & glory.  The shadow of the Armory (the shadow of War) remains.


The shadow of the huge gray Armory (an empty arsenal) 
looms over Shakespeare's Head and the faded garden. 
Climbing into uniform, polishing their cannon,
a remnant of the veterans still ropes a tight circle –

once a year – around the old town. Arms and medallions 
gleam in the dusky half-light; the ghost of drums 
comes back, hale and hollow fifth columns;
the monument breathes a brigade of African

Americans, marching to 19th-century major chords.
Gospel music, sculpted clay. . . and Henry hunts the phantom 
feline down dry garden paths.  And Bluejay, lonesome, 
bares one arm (hieroglyph – or sweetheart – without words). 

           2.24.98  Shrove Tuesday (Mardi Gras)

Benefit Street Arsenal (Shakespeare's Head in lower right corner)

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