Poems by William C. Watterson

TO A YOUNG MUSEUM GUARD

In blue livery unfit for a king
she stands more or less
at attention,
her white gloves unsullied by art.

A pillar of late empire,
she holds the building up
like a caryatid grown clumsy
on the wage of her subsistence.

Watching her watch,
she knows that time is money,
that money is marble, giltwood
and paint.

If you look too long
she returns your stare,
afraid of what you might be thinking,
afraid of what she does not know.

She would love it if every day were Monday
and the stone rolled away from the tomb.

You wouldn't find her here
or anywhere that beauty needed money
or colors for the world to pay for
time and time again.

On her day off she goes to the beach,
for a moment finds herself
like Venus freezing in the foam.

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