Every day I am interrupted by art.
Sometimes it’s a reproduction
of Composition II in Red, Blue,
and Yellow on someone’s wall or
“To restore silence is the role of
objects” when I pick up a book
by my desk, flip through the pages,
and start to read. I welcome the inter-
ruption. But sometimes it’s an ad
for plastic surgery in a magazine
or the car that’s closing in behind
me and as the woman who’s staring
madly and passionately straight ahead
drives past I can see that her bumper
sticker says “And the Lamb (Jesus)
Will Crush the Serpent in the Head.”
You don’t need to open the door
to Thomas Kinkade’s Christmas
Cottage to know that the people
inside are assholes and I don’t need
to parse the words pasted on
the woman’s car or research
the biblical sources of her violent
fantasies to know that I want to stay
far behind her on the road.
Real art can heal you or hurt
you but bad art just fucks you up.
I reach for the dial, turn the music
up loud, and rub my eyes to make
sure that I’m really awake and
the world has not ended.