So she painted


Perfection was merely a word

in a world where words were taken with the wind

and left shamefully unheard,


so she began to show, not speak.


Never the most creative or crafty or controlled,

she was left with no power, no way

for her to comfort or revolt,


so she looked for the artist in her soul.


With the brushes of silken words that stayed in her mind,

she painted the sun to shine on his birthday;

she painted the roses along the pathway;

she painted their blameless dancing on a Sunday morning;

she painted his strength to put the poison down;

she painted whispers of affirmation when she only saw numbers—


she painted their smiles on a bad day,

their laughs when they thought it would never end,

the love she thought her words could display,


so she never stopped, never wanted to.


The she, the he, the her, the they, the them, the him—

her watercolor of words wept for everyone and anyone,

and her paint became happiness, a synonym,


so she kept her drowsy fingertips on the brush.


As the sun revived anew every day, casting replicas of the willows,

the artist stayed busy under the sleepy trees;

the artist stayed cemented to her spot, her paints, her brush;

the artist stayed with her head in the intoxicating sketchbooks;

the artist stayed silent with traitorous tears traipsing with gravity;

the artist stayed wishing and hoping and praying it still worked.


Yet when the stars finally cried for her to go home,

shooting across the sky as if it was an astrological SOS,

she lifted her eyes to meet the world in dry, horrid monochrome,


so she no longer considered those truthful tears to be traitors.


No smile hiding in her eyes, no color to the willows,

she forgot to draft her own destiny of dreams,

and the paint had crumbled too long ago in her shadows,


so she learned it was hard to accept what was empty.