DO NOT TOUCH THE ART
By Caridad Moro-Gronlier
After Steigend steigend sinke nieder (rising, rising, falling down), 2009-2012, Geheimnis der Farne (The Secret of the Fern), 2007 and Die Erdzeitalter,2014 by Anselm Keifer and Depression Bread Line,1991 and Subway by George Segal as seen at The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse, Miami, FL.
You want to hold this salvage
of earth and stone in your hands, learn
the heft of Paris in pieces, applique
your knees with pebbles in this white room—
shrine to how the ruined becomes resurrected.
You want to disrupt the Jenga of lead and canvas,
coax the filmstrip out from the pyre, pinch it
free of hemp and boulders, pull on
the boa of still frames, hold it up to the light.
You want to sit with the impression
of the woman shelled in plaster, lean over
and ask her what she’s seen, unwrap
her bandages down to the soft center,
find what remains after years
of looking down at knuckles and knees.
You want to walk along a welcome mat of coal,
cook on the kind of stove your grandmother
warned you against, feed the line of men
with remnants of the earth that broke them,
men whose coats you long to hem,
men whose hats you long to straighten,
brims twisted by the plea in their fingers,
skin so hard now, no softness left
after begging for so much less
than it cost to memorialize them in bronze.
You want to,
but do not
touch the art.
Caridad Moro-Gronlier is the author of Visionware published by Finishing Line Press. She is the recipient of an Elizabeth George Foundation Grant and a Florida Individual Artist Fellowship in poetry. She is a dual-enrollment English Professor for Miami Dade Public Schools in conjunction with FIU, a professor for Miami Dade College and the Editor-In-Chief of The Orange Island Review.