Seeking to whisk my wife away from our ongoing pandemic solitude for an afternoon I consulted Atlas Obscura for something new to see. As a 60-year denizen of the city it’s getting harder to find new things and many venues are, of course closed for the pandemic (and many may, sadly, never re-open). The Atlas recommended the Gardens of St Luke in the Fields, “a quiet and contemplative oasis in the middle of New York’s bustle and riot.” We have, of course passed by on the street many times without realizing there was more to go in and see. From the description there was much to see and many gardens to explore. And while, as I hope these pictures will attest, the Garden is lovely, much of it is not open to see. The area we walked on a raw and chilly Spring afternoon was too small to provide much escape from the bustle and noise of the surrounding streets or the Garden’s many visitors, all there no doubt with the same fond hope as us. I’d still recommend it if you find yourself in the area.
The plaque says, “Addressing the Statue,” and notes that while some love the historic statue, others abhor the clear subservient stance of the Native and African American.
In fact, the plaque does not so much address the statue’s problematic nature as leverage it to invite visitors to enter the museum “to learn more,” one of the natural long-term outcomes of Ronald Reagan’s charge to mediate everything in the marketplace.
A few months ago the statue was surrounded by stanchions to keep anti-racists at bay. Evidently the Museum has calculated that zealousness to have abated.
There’s an apartment building on the corner here which styles itself “the White House,” I’m not sure why. Every year I promise myself I’m not going to post pretty pictures of flowers – not my thing – and every year, as we emerge from the slough of Winter I demur, especially following this plague year. These were in the planter in front of the White House.