Byron Beynon

Musée du Louvre

From his 1993 collection Restaurant of Mud, published by Stride.


                                     An umbilical queue of people
                                     is attached to Pei's pyramid.
                                     Once inside I take the escalator
                                     that descends from the modern entrance
                                     to the underground bookshops and cafes,
                                     where visitors pay to enter
                                     the wings of the museum.
                                     A bewildering choice of rooms and corridors,
                                     a plethora of antiquities, paintings, sculpture,
                                     the calm Mona Lisa
                                     behind bullet-proof glass.
                                     "In the Louvre at one o'clock",
                                     Mary Wordsworth met Annette
                                     for the first time, and Caroline
                                     always called William "father".
                                     I am a victim of fascination,
                                     a magnet for the flow of life,
                                     its fever, its vanishing point.