Mural of a Girl


The giant’s bricked-over heart
and her bricked-over hands
hold flowers dripping pastel colors.
Her gaze follows the petals.
I pass unnoticed beside her elbow
as a man wearing black
—hair slick, aviators hanging
single-limbed from his shirt collar—
pivots, sharply, urgently
presses his notebook against her
passionately and draws a pen
from his breast pocket. His ruled page
is a black-ink cursive web.
Fiercely, he scrawls addenda.
At the top of the page, a salutation
hung in earnest loops and curls:
“To My One True Love.”
The giant sighs in gusts
heaved from the East River.
She cracks, ossified in mortar,
mortal, as time steals paint and texture,
and the prick of the pen
stings with the directionality of love.

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