For what, I ask, do you waste yourself
Raining on a beautiful canvas while it’s drying?
Decanting your acid into my spring waters?
Destroying what you haven’t created?
My happiness, does it counteract yours?
Does breaking bridges gratify your appetite for destruction?
(But all you can hope to achieve is a non-calamitous dent.)
I’m a leaning tower that defies
The gravity of your acrimoniousness
That persistently but futilely labors to
Cause my fall, my breakage.
But the integrity of my substance
Exceeds the strength of your pull,
Keeping me from shattering,
Keeping you from triumphing.
The hand that holds the knife is not
Guaranteed against being cut by its own blade.
The arm that swings the hammer of destruction
Will itself debilitate, courtesy of its weight.
With coal dust in your myopic eyes
You see warped, distorted images
Like reflections in carnival mirrors,
The surface of disturbed water,
Or the cave of a polished spoon.
Seeing with a visual apparatus
Slick with a film of judgment
Perhaps renders your discolored,
Tinged view of my world and me
To yourself most sightly.
But, how long will you bear to see nightshade where there actually bloom roses?
Serpents where there actually stand people?
Relieve yourself of that judgmental culture, your cataract, your coal dust.
Do yourself a favor: wash your eyes and see,
Behold the beauty that is,
Rather than contriving an ugliness that never was.
The scrape of the pointed end of graphite is musicTo a white-knuckled writer who creates art with words.
The smell of ink-adorned and blotted parchment
Or parchment untouched by the tip of his quill
Is to him a perfume finer than the notes compounded in Paris.
In lieu of floral embellishments, his study is strewn with wads;
Royal blue and pitch black tributaries make a map on his veteran hand.
His myopic, bespectacled eyes are like those of the genius jeweler:
Scrutiny-laden and hypercritical.
What the lapidary encases in cloth of velvet and a bed of satin,
He infixes betwixt bindings of vinyl or leather.
When contentment makes its slow but sure way into his self-scathing mind,
The man with the callused and dull aching digits knows that he has
Contributed to humanity a Mona Lisa in words.
With pen and paper, quill and inkpot, he created art – a magnum opus.