Starving Artist

September 8, 2007 § Leave a comment

He has a lean, quiet face and a linen suit.

He gazes at my work with dispassion
while I envy his income, his regular paycheck.
I flip slowly through my black box full of austere pictures
glued down onto thick black boards.

I am wearing practiced confidence,
professional demeanor,
a hasty manicure
and my only pair of good shoes.

Then, we arrive at an image that makes the moment freeze
and shudder,
spilling stillness all over my ink.

“Did you do this for yourself?” he asks.

Confused and a little insulted, I insist a little too forcefully,
“No!” and I describe the CLIENT, the ASSIGNMENT.
“Yes,” he says,
“But did you do this for yourself ?”

I look from his hungry face to the glossy print,
and the memory of the day I painted an impassive sun
and moon and mythical beasts
in gold and black and red and blue,
and the pale light from the window

makes the room glow softly

while he tells me about his music.


September 8, 2007


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