The Grotto Poems at Vizcaya Museum & Gardens

© Nicholas Ramirez

Wandering Through the Garden
By Nicholas Ramirez

By the water’s edge stands a living history
A steady groan echoes through its bones
Breezing through the mangroves
Remnants of splendor and fleeting fancy
A union of times far gone
With memories to be told

I meander through the gardens
Monoliths of dignity stand
Propped along the dusky canals
Footpaths of weathered stone winding
Lizards stand watchful, like solemn guards
Only to scatter at my approach
Trees loom over its denizens
A shelter from the searing sun

As I see this old estate
I wonder what stories I could tell
That could honor this aged fellow
A soul that has lasted centuries
And what the gardens can whisper
As I wander along the worn paths

Isabella  Montes.jpg
© Isabella Montes

A Captain’s Adoration
By Isabella Montes

Ships tend to remind me of Neverland.
Suspended above our heads, the caravel anchors blurry dreams, cradled memories.
This desperate pattern spread across the walls whispers about the man with a vision.

In my mind, Deering was first an artist. From Crayola colored blueprints of themed rooms
he became a child. A glance into his life, he grew to become Captain Deering: Legendary

There is a statue of a boy. There is a statue of a boy holding Loyalty, Humility,
Faith through pain in the curve of his hunched form. Worshipped throughout
history across a sea. It’s part of Deering’s loot. He liked his expression. It goes with the drapes.

There are secrets here. Hushed voices lingering in cold halls. A history disguised
like several adaptations of a fairytale. Lives lost in dust.

There are nasty things. Forgotten among shifting management. Withered by time.
For our stories, our landmarks, our countries were founded through the
complex system of The Hunt. The attack. The plunder. The conquer.

2017. Here we stand within treasure. A balance between an uncomfortable severing of
cultures and a jewel. Protected as a fragile rose in a trembling hurricane of modernization.

Here. This pirate settled down, if for a few months in a year.
I can only imagine what a wonder it must have been. What a wonder it must be.
To claim your grandest adventure, your prized creation, is home.

viz as text.jpg
© Isabella Marie Garcia

isla de tesoro
By Isabella Marie Garcia

always out of reach
a vessel of the sea
that’s always out of reach

I look out onto the water
gripping my camera
hoping for a ship
that personifies adventure
but I get a boat that’s slowly rotting
its corpse sucked away by the atlantic

I look up at the roof of a “home”
gripping my phone
hoping for a ship
that personifies imagination
but I get a cheap imitation
one you could find perched
on a tacky armoire in kirkland’s  

what’s with all these inreachable illusions?
the titanic was the largest passenger ship afloat
in 1912
in 2017
it’s popular oceanic junk

european men bragging about their grand and wonderful women
gran princesa de los cielos
mv princess victoria
ss principessa jolanda
claiming them as their own
an ownership that was never theirs to begin with
and now belongs to the sea

You think You own these vessels
vessels of propulsive speed
vessels capable of wreckage and destruction
You never owned them in the first place
not even the sea does
as wood disintegrates and metal corrodes

© Jonah Wichterich

Prison in Paradise
By Jonah Wichterich

A toast to the forgotten ones
The go fetch my coffee ones
The seen but not heard ones

Your home foreign
Your master benevolent
Your service appreciated

Ready for service
with the pull of a lever
You came for a better life
Did you find it

You built this city
no matter what they say
or don’t say

We owe you
our way of life

So here’s to you

© Sabrina Lima

By Sabrina Lima

A pain, so small, yet so sweet and blissful
Wonderful pain, taking away from the terrors of the
World for just one moment.
Pain bringing me peace, and inspiring
a moment of ignorance.
The pain flowing through, also
Making life worthwhile.
The pain, reminding me of my mission in this
World, and fueling me to push forward.
The pain that helped me become.

© Amanda Johnston

By Amanda Johnston

Something stands in the way.

Or rather, it rises to stand in the
way, clinging to a structure like
an architect clinging to this idea
that nature can be controlled.

It grows more dense the closer it
gets to the sunlight, reaching for
a breath of fresh air amidst the
deafening silence this Mansion that seems
out of time in this city seems to bring.

It blocks a view, a view of this Mansion
dropped in this city by this architect who so
desired to control the uncontrollable, to
destroy something that is, above all else, a

It is said that Nature is a force to be
reckoned with, and there’s a reason why.

She is ready to stand and retaliate against
those who stand and retaliate against Her.
Or maybe She already has.

Because she rose to stand in the way.

The Vizcaya Poems by Poetry Art Community
The Frog Fountain Poems
The Secret Garden Poems
The Center Island Poems
The Grotto Poems
The West Pool Poems


John William Bailly & Stephanie Sepúlveda 10 November 2017