The Island’s Muses

Will Gray writes:  

Today I amused myself getting up-close-and-personal with the island’s muses. (Little word play there?)  These nine women are intimidating to me.  It’s not that they are taller than I am.  (I’m six feet.)  It’s the way they occupy their personal space — or something.  They stand around outside the Luis A. Ferre Performing Arts Center, here in Santurce.  And it’s not the fact that each one is a lustrous bronze color and bare-breasted — I like that, of course.  It’s the wild look in each of their eyes that’s unsettling.


Here you can watch some lovely, daring ladies help the citizens of Santurce (where I now live) become more comfortable with the resident Musas.

Naturally, my encounter with the muses, makes me think of Maria.  (Any excuse.)  She’s my muse, in the sense that she captivates me. Whether I see her from a distance, or right within my arms, everything about her absorbs me. I wonder if she knows how deeply?

If she were standing among these island muses, she would hold her own, even at five six.  I can see her now:  Maria Fuentes, the History Muse.  Other arts already represented:  song, dance, theatre, film, architecture, literature.  Maria would be holding an hourglass up above her head and marking time.  Maybe she’d wear her glasses; she looks good in them.  The island needs its History Muse.  And if Maria were here, I’d be sitting at her feet.  She would look down at me with affection and tell me one of the island stories that always seems to be dancing in her head — lighting up her eyes.

Anyway,  I’m supposed to meet her tonight for a tour of San Jose Church, which is forever under restoration and full of dark recesses:  a perfect place to be spirited away by one’s muse.


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