Easter Monday

Easter Monday
by Theodora Goss

In the city that has not been bombed,
there are people walking.
Some of them are clearly lovers,
some of them are just as clearly families
or friends — you can tell
from the way they walk together,
touch each other — the teenage girls
giggling over whatever they see on their cell phones,
the couple talking quietly, heads leaning
toward one another, the children on scooters, their father
also on his scooter, moving over the pavement
like ducks on a pond, with a similar
fluid buoyancy.
The woman sitting by herself on the museum steps,
intent on knitting something orange —
a scarf? For herself or her boyfriend,
brother, grandmother,
who have not been killed in a war.

The forsythia are blooming,
the lilacs are just beginning to bloom,
the periwinkles are blooming, blue and purple,
there are tulips.

In the city that has not been bombed,
the trams are running,
although the stores are closed for the holiday,
the holy day, which is why the church bells are ringing,
and the river is flowing, hopefully to another city
that has not been bombed,
under its bridges. The boats —
I can’t see them from here, but I’m certain
that the boats are still sailing
on the river, under the flags of different countries,
unfurling in the wind.

Meanwhile, here people are walking
under the trees, the beeches and birches
and ancient chestnuts,
which are lifting their candles,
their white candles,
amid the emerging green, as though celebrating
spring and rebirth in the city that has not been bombed

(The image is Union Square in Spring by Childe Hassam.)

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