Mrs. Gardner's Garden

Not only for the eye, these splendid grounds Beneath a sky of glass. The very air -- Italian air -- caresses, and the sounds Are tranquil splashing sounds that quench the blare Of Fenway traffic. Ghosts of gondoliers Might loiter here, by rosy marble walls, By geometric lawns of baby's-tears And fretted gates that lead to flowered halls. She gave her parties here, Venetian nights For solvent Back Bay gentlefolk who strolled And sipped among the lilies and the lights Of moon and candle, star and marigold. Today a dollar buys an hour's retreat From vacant lots and p apers in the street.

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