by Sidney D.
"La Toilette (or Morning Sunlight)" Richard E. Miller 1914
|The woman in the museum starts when she sees me.
The gallery is quiet and I am the only person in the impressionist wing.
She apologizes. says she only needs to get the room’s temperature.
About the weather and the pandemic. About her mom who is elderly,
About my great-grandmother, recently recovered from the virus,
About the hill in front of her family home,
About the time the museum power went out.
they had to drag in generator powered fans
to preserve the pieces.
She leaves me after some minutes
Leaves me with my Emily, whom I came to see.
Emily, who is perched on her vanity stool,
with an open window behind her and a mirror in her hand.
Emily stares down at herself, and I stare at her,
Something about her captures me.
clean and distinct.
Garden and tablecloth,
No where in the description,
Is her name given.
The artist is a man,
I cannot remember when or why I started
To call her Emily.
She is the reason I cannot stay away.
Emily, and the quiet, and the woman.