At the Plaza de Santa Croce

Jennifer Martelli

most pigeons’ wings shone deep
indigo against the basilica’s terra cotta facade.

Before I could enter the cathedral, I had to buy a blue
paper shawl to cover my bare shoulders:

my left blade with its one-ink tattoo of a bass clef, the right,
the dark still face of Kitty Genovese.

The lady said to save the shawl for all the churches in Italy.
For one euro, I was winged and God wasn’t offended.