This poem is taken from Stand 222, 17(2) May - June 2019.

David Alan Goldstein Taboo
My wife is a home health care nurse. She visits patients in their home.

One day, she visited a man in a poor area who she had not attended to before. She was there to change a catheter.

‘You have good hands,’ he said afterward. ‘How long have you been a nurse?’

‘Thirty years,’ she said.

‘I guess you went to nursing school right outta college.’

‘No, I went to art school first,’ she said.

‘Oh, let me give you a little quiz.’

‘I’m not very good at quizzes.’

‘Turn around and look at the painting on my wall.’

It was not exactly a painting but a poster.

‘It’s Van Gogh,’ she said.

It was not Starry Night but Van Gogh is pretty hard not to recognise.

‘That’s right,’ he said with some joy.

Then he said in a chuckling whisper, ‘I was a guard at the art museum for twenty five years…’ He paused. ‘…and every day when nobody was looking, I touched the paintings.’
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