The Artiste

She made us draw bones and dead leaves.

This pig-tailed teacher gave us an hour to draw every nook and cranny of the bones and the curves of the dead leaves.

Nothing pretty. Just white and brown and dead.

She gave us an old shoe that had been worn for 35 years.

We drew the negative spaces and twists and turns of the ratty shoelaces.

I was proud of my shoe drawing and we hung it up on the fridge.

Old, dead things do not excite me I learned.

I wish I could draw the beautiful mess in our minds.

What would redemption look like? What would a happy, medicated couple look like?

We stared at the palms of our hands for two hours and traced each line.

I don’t think palm readers ever get this close of an analysis.

I learned it is better to draw and not look at the picture.

The lines are prettier when you don’t know what you are doing.

They make little patterns and waves and you are completely blind.

God’s blind art was good for the soul.

I will hang up this piece and call myself an artiste.

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