Today's poem is by David Citino


Last night at Sotheby's in many-splendored Manhattan,
records were set for five artists, including Cezanne,
whose Still Life with Curtain, Pitcher and Bowl of Fruit
brought $60.5 milling. The collection of Impressionism

from the estate of a former ambassador to Britain
was rivaled only by that of a Greek shipping magnate
(which word, from Latin—a dead language—means man
of wealth
). What is it about art that brings us again

and again to death? The sale will help the daughters
of the deceased pay the government, for the only things
sure in life are art and taxes, we keep meaning to say.
The Cezanne was a first-rate example of the artist's

mature still lifes. Mature is right. And nothing could be
more still. The price is said to show that the world of art
is in great shape. Cezanne, Seurat, Picasso—all artists
worth their salt—the paper didn't need to say,

continue to earn interest, mature, appreciate, decay.

Copyright © 2003 David Citino All rights reserved
from Paperwork
Kent State University Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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