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Museum Piece

 The good gray guardians of art
Patrol the halls on spongy shoes,
Impartially protective, though
Perhaps suspicious of Toulouse.
Here dozes one against the wall, Disposed upon a funeral chair.
A Degas dancer pirouettes Upon the parting of his hair.
See how she spins! The grace is there, But strain as well is plain to see.
Degas loved the two together: Beauty joined to energy.
Edgar Degas purchased once A fine El Greco, which he kept Against the wall beside his bed To hang his pants on while he slept.

by Richard Wilbur
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