Photo by simpleinsomnia

He breathes into the desk,
leans over the white page
sharpened pencil in hand
mug of Earl Grey cooling
beside him but back to the paper,
which is blank except for one word
in the upper right corner
Draw, so he begins
moves his hand up and down.
Lines and shapes begin to form.
The bending of his wrist,
the familiar motion—
on the page a cow appears
then a tree, a boy, and over
to the right a horse
head bent to the grass.
But let’s get back
to the barefooted boy,
ten or eleven, walking
toward the horse with a
handful of wet carrots
suspended in time like
the artist himself. He’d
like to know if the boy is him,
but he’s long given up thoughts
of knowing, remembering.
It doesn’t matter anyway.
The lines are drawn.
The boy is reaching.
The horse still looking at the grass
and the sun, if you could see
it, so bright and radiant above
the whole lot of this
small and perfect world.

Steve Cushman earned his MFA from University of North Carolina-Greensboro and has published two novels, Portisville and Heart With Joy, as well as apoetry chapbook, Hospital Work.

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