Voices on the Wind
Voices on Waiting
Waiting to Enter the Galleria
by Wilda Morris
It is mid-November, well after tourist season.
I line up to enter the Galleria del Academia,
wait several minutes before concluding
Iím in the wrong queue, the one for groups.
I zip down the block to the end
of the other lineónot as long
as I anticipatedóand begin another wait.
I no sign the line is moving
till a young couple gives up,
crosses the street and disappears,
putting me two spaces closer to the entrance.
Women in colorful garb and covered heads
come down the street begging
for coins. I wonder how many beggars
walked these streets when Michaelangelo
was releasing David from the massive stone
abandoned by Rossellino. Did the artist
take a ducat from his pocket, press it
into a waiting palm as he passed?
And would he be surprised how long
people wait patiently for a chance
to admire the biblical hero he sculpted
more than 500 years ago?