House of Cards

December 19, 2009
Custom User Avatar
More by this author
I am a lowly servant in a temple of creation
Dancing with roaches in the light of the Starry Night
Singing under the strict discipline of American Gothic
I work with only the dizzying smell of ammonia to shock my senses
I am an empty glass on the edge of a table
I am a vacant birdcage
I am the janitor in an art museum.

I live by day as a speck in an empty break room
Bitter solitude echoes my existence
A flawed stitch in the prestigious fabric of the art museum
A deck of cards: my only friend
I shuffle
Play solitaire
Build a house of cards
Small, flimsy, and insignificant
My life in the form of red and black ink-stained papers

Closing time seals the presence of the night
The visitors have disappeared
I can finally emerge from the shadows
No longer a shameful presence

I spot a flickering light
A side-gallery breakdown
Dragging my mop, I go forth
Trash litters the floor
A baby’s pacifier
Pencils and erasers
Crumpled surveys, abandoned schoolwork

The walls are lined with faces
All-seeing eyes shine bright, following me
Never blinking, never sleeping
Stern men dripping with majesty
Spoiled women draped in secrecy
Sinister fools dancing to the sound of silence
Staring me down
Breaking me under the harsh glares that only oversized royalty can give
Chills run up and down my spine
They are everywhere

A door at the end of the hallway
A plaque announces a traveling exhibition
“House of Cards”
The broken bulb beckons

My eyes behold a room transformed
Empty yesterday, bursting tonight
All around the gallery are card creations
Card mansions
Card palaces
Card Eiffel towers

I see my life flash before my eyes
This is no dusty attempt at beauty
Art lives again

I laugh and laugh

My house of cards isn’t insignificance
It is art
A masterpiece

Suddenly I am no longer a janitor
I am an artist
Creator of magnificence

Confidence flows through my fingertips as I change the flickering light bulb
I vow to return to my house of cards with pride at the end of the night
Perhaps tomorrow I will make a temple of cards
Who knows what the artist in me will be inspired to do tomorrow

One thing is for sure though
It will be beautiful
And larger than life

Just like me.

Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

Site Feedback