Thursday, April 05, 2007

He said, "Let me paint a picture of your soul,"
To which I replied, "Wouldn't black and white
Photography be a better medium--more true to
The truth, with more grey than color?"
But he just sat and pulled out his paints
And brushes, so I tried very hard to keep still

So he could work. Hours later, here we are, still
Waiting for the oil and acrylic to dry, my soul
Done up in reds and blues, brighter paints,
Brighter hues than I would like, no speck of white
Showing on this canvas. And yet the colors
All bleed into one--brown? black?--and dance to

Some unheard harmony my ears still strain to
Hear, but I think he knows it, loves it, still
Hums that tune silently while he wipes the color
From his old worn hands and my soul
Sits down after posing so long, her white-
Bleached linen wrinkled with motion. The paint

Fumes are making us all giddy--paint,
Like wine, has stained me scarlet. Too
Often he has tried to make this pale white
Spirit rainbow-hued like fractured light. Still,
I understand his need to try and make this soul
Something beautiful, something lovely, colored

By his perception of me (the hues colored
Crimson by his bloodied eyes), and so he asks to paint
Me not in truth, but in dreams--and my soul
Now rises, and I watch her go to the canvas, to
Her portrait, and she looks at that false mirror, still,
Quiet, and then she smiles, her white

Dress now tinted by the canvas glow. And the white
Light of the morning illuminates the colors
Of this room; I watch the sun stand still
Before me, and from the shadows the painter
Comes to me, points to his work and says, "To-
day I gave you a brighter soul."

And so I turn and look, and my soul, no longer white
And faded, but now colored in the hues of the painted
Sun, asks him to sing--and she is dancing still.

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