rolling off a flat world

I truly enjoy returning to older pieces and completely reworking them. I rarely like my original versions. I hack away the meat until only the marrow remains, then I throw out the skeleton and bury the bones.

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knots of secrets

No light reflecting in those intense dark eyes. Windows to the soul, not on this face. Manhole covers down to deeper things. Between the furrowed brow where one might find introspection, I find knots of secrets the way bucks lock horns then die. He’d been a lover of men long ago. I know because he kept photo proofs stashed in shoeboxes under his saggy bed. The most dogeared photo was of silver-haired lovers entwined when they were past lovemaking and exhausted beyond repair. It wasn’t his figure in the careworn image. I once asked him who the two were. He told me it wasn’t for him to say, the couple in the photo were in love and love is a sacred thing one must hold dear. I asked if deer locked horns because they were in love. He shrugged his shoulders and replied, “No young one, when bucks lock antlers they are horny. Animals have fellowship. Humans have love. Love is a gift and it must be cherished.”

Around his apartment, black and white photos cling to their slice of wall space. Clouds stick to heaven the very same way. Each image perfectly soldiered into painted symmetrical wood. The sturdy black frames cannot diminish the powerful subject matter within. Love. Curving, languid nudes in soft light sometimes wrapped with white sheets like gossamer wings. Decades ago, my uncle was hired to shoot elegant boudoir stills for couples. Most of these amorous pairs commissioned him early into their young marriages. When their skin glowed beneath hot halogens and their figures flowed smooth like silk honeymoon lingerie. Each photo paper lover appeared sculpted in form and perfectly matched to their partner’s body. My uncle had an artful way with autonomy. Names were never known. Gazing at one of his large black and white images is akin to admiring a marble figure whose face is left trapped inside stone, much like Rodin often made the artistic choice to leave casting seams.

Uncle Milo has since lost his eight-five percent of his vision. His elegant wavy hair is silver-white. Those intense marble eyes now covered in a milky glaze. He’d call it dodging light in the dark room. Today, I ask him again who the two silver-haired lovers were. He responds in his whiskey voice, “Young one, they were the only partners who respected the sanctity of love beyond the beauty of their flesh. Their love was the most honest love I’ve ever witnessed in my small life. I’ve accumulated a great wealth, to have captured such treasure.”

sides

sketched last year for a writing project-thank you

a poem to you that will never be read

I imagine our thighs mingling on a park bench
while mottled pigeons entertain us
their plastic beaks bounce against the ground
stabbing about for sustenance

this provides a momentary distraction
for the queries I’ve collected in my pocket
written over time
now melded with
distressed paper, near cloth
many thick lettered questions have I
with ellipses after each

on the other side of my velvet scrap
a longing poem
which will never be read
at least, by you

it goes something like this

if I burnish my metallic heart
until all imperfections are gone
there would be very little left
and what does remain
would be the beginnings of a mistake

the end

still there we sit, outer thighs humming together through our bluejeans…

Seated blue nude/charcoal

Seated blue nude/charcoal

he was my messy room

Poised/watercolor

he’d been the messy room
in my well-ordered house
distractions across the floor
crossing the doorway into other areas
thoughts strewn in a heap
his biggest disasters saved for the closet
windows always streaked
left open on the coldest days
I resented the mess
in my appointed home
didn’t he ever care about my needs
or my organized insanity

the mess is gone now
everything cleared away
or hauled off in untidy grocery cartons
my house is perfectly arranged once more
but I’d give anything
to have every kernel of that crap covering the carpet again
I realized too late
his mess was simply a byproduct
of his passion
and damn he was passionate
I wish I knew where his clutter was now
though my home has returned to absolute order
I am a jumbled mess without him

 

drinking alone

I suck my drink down
all the way to the bottom
just like my life
all the way to the bottom
the fractured chips
how beautiful they shine
way up there in aroma heaven
my dark crimson ‘lipstuck’
always looks prettier on the rim
after the glass has been emptied
when staring up isn’t so painful

Upright nude trio/charcoal

charcoal nudes done way, way back in high school
this was an experiment – from the writing aspect, not the drinking;)

barren

not there, are you
I don’t know
many things surprise me
you not being there
less of a surprise
more of an assumption
I don’t know
all this contemplating
gets me nothing
but sweaty nights
we could have been something
two insecure beings
shoring up each others dreams
could have been something
you and I
me and you
whatever it might have been
compost now
maybe some other time
another steaming night

a chance to break through the earth
whatever it could have been
the bed is barren now
as is my heart

Blonde/pastel

 

it was just a room

studio gone
it’s just a room
isn’t it
wasn’t it
what has been lost
it was just a room
if one is passionate
about their work
walls shouldn’t matter
or doors
only the spirit
only the heart
the room might be empty
but the mind is full
always full
if one is passionate
it was just a room
after all

Curl/charcoal

Curl/charcoal

 

 

body counts can be lonely

your first makes you feel clumsy
the next keeps you in the present
the third makes you crave the future
the fourth grabs hold and you must run
the fifth is very learned and you do
the sixth wants much when you have little
bodies start turning into lonely places
the seventh, eighth and ninth become conjoined memories
the tenth needs more than you’re willing to give
then
maybe
one, asks you to linger forever

and you do…

Poised/watercolor

Poised/watercolor

nude model college curriculum

Spreading Dreams

I sleep during daylight hours
dreaming with my eyes open
reading you
calms my beating mind
and sinks raw desire deep
into the rose-colored marrow
dark into the night
I lie in bed awake
rippling velvet nuances
blanket my flesh
I am at peace
body relaxed
knowing your words are
spreading dreams

Blonde/pastel

Blonde/pastel

Pastel nude drawn long ago in a figure class…