There is a castle in the middle of Central Park. It's not a real castle, but it's built of real stones and displaces real air just the same. It's never been anyone's home or been stormed by any ragtag bands of heroic outlaws. Its construction was completed in 1872 and until renovations made it a more pleasant attraction, it lived most of its life as an unnecessarily grand warehouse for the park's meteorology equipment.
This castle overlooks a small pond. Its windows offering views of the water and the surrounding park.
North of the pond sits a small, open-air theater. Since it hosted its first performance in 1962, its 1800 seats have faced south, mostly, toward the stage, and the pond, and the pretend castle. A surreal, perfect backdrop befitting the thrill of watching Cymbeline under an open sky.
Beyond the theater there is an expansive, oval-shaped lawn. Its pillowy, green grass, still wet with dew, stretches out past the sand and dust of the ballfields. On an early summer morning, the sun rises behind the tree line.
The birds have the infield all to themselves as a quiet line of New Yorkers wait patiently for a free ticket to a play staged at a theater, under the gaze of a folly perched on a hill, overlooking a pond.