Exit the Imperial Arms
Cross the bridge over the 405
Ignore the voice from the doorway
asking for change.
Pass the low income towers,
Pass the youth shelter
Pass the Plaid Pantry
Pass the gaping hole in the ground
that will soon be yet another
huge glass tower.
Sidestep the dog excrement,
the Doritos bags and crushed
energy drink cans.
Avoid the college kids striding forward
staring at their cell phones.
Beware the cars that disregard
the walk signals.
Pass the Safeway and swipe your key card
and open the door to the staff entrance
of the museum.
Ignore the staggering gray skeleton
staring as you enter the building.
The whole journey takes about
five minutes. Retrace your steps
at the end of the day, once again
disappearing into the Imperial Arms.
Full circle, every weekday.
Do you hear how hollow
these footsteps sound,