The Portrait

Sometimes the air is thick blue water walls of fatigue, standing against the yellow light, to be a dull gray liquid shadow on my thought. The neighbor paid me for the portrait that I painted of his daughter. I made her beautiful. The love was a cloudless sunfilled sky. The love was for you. I gave myself painting it for longer than a year, dragging my open naked eyes on the changing canvas, to color them red, using more emotion than paint, before I finished, and gave it to him. I’ll always remember. The love’s not something that I can sever from me, and sell. I sold only the portrait. I didn’t discuss the price with him, and he paid me more than I would have asked. Which I received through the thick wet air, with an open heart, a gaping hole. Sometimes I can only cry. Not to tell you that I love you, but to love you. To hold earth’s stone in hand, and to wipe my tears on it to dry.

February 1971