THE LIGHT MUSEUM
by Ellen Davis
The building model looks perfect except
it isnít there. Itís made
of light bent and projected by a laser
into the ether. But each color,
each column and structure, appears solid,
a wavy blue road to the future,
the domed observatory changed
to a thing its makers would love
to have imagined. You can walk
up and down a stepladder to see
its designs move into the air
before you. You travel past the exhibits
like some astronaut stranded in an ocean
of light; a set of red glass globes
extends back and forth as you walk
past the frame. Hereís a collection
of geometric shapes in muted brown;
a cylinder, a pyramid, the figure of O;
they jut out and recede as the observer
does the opposite. Squares edged by the spectrum
leap from their frames.
One cadaverous man appears ready
to wield his pencil. A woman blows a kiss.
Toward the end stands a rainforest
made of sounds of the creatures
animating cut-out designs of the leaves.
You start to see that everything
is hologram, refracted beam
of its own idea, that even you arenít
just bones and cells but a collection
of all the times you reflected light.
Copyright © 2008 by Ellen Davis.