His ghost sits on the tombstone in the
the one tilted like a crooked tooth full of decay.
He believes his trips to the river three hundred years ago,
plodding steps to the river fifty yards away,
were miles and miles tread in vain, in obscurity.
For thirty years he carried water in wooden pails
the great scaffolding of wood and holy bones,
his humble contribution to the cathedral’s cartilage,
to the cement mortar so that polished beatific blocks
gray stone from the quarry could rise to the heaven
painted in yellow noonday heat or the blue matin rain.
His joints ached and sang psalms of penitential pain.
tour buses glide along the boulevard,
the cumulus cloud above stitched by the contrails of a jet.
Sunbeams carom from stained glass to the pale eyes above the grave.
face, his signature, is everywhere reflected from the great walls,
and he knows now that he was an artist, not a slave.
The ghost ascends, cleansed and joyous and saved.