“Clouded Judgment” by @hueman_. Spray paint and acrylic on canvas. Part of her “Between The Lines” show at @projectgallery.
#hueman #cloudedjudgment #betweenthelines #projectgallery #painting #spraypaint #acrylic #canvas #art #fineart #streetart #hollywood #losangeles (at Project Gallery)

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between the lines

We live between the lines
In borderless dimensions
Wearing nothing but our earnestness
Our naïveté
We cannot hide
The simple things we are

We ride on the backs of tigers
Leaving flower petals
To beautify the paths we have taken
The veins explored
We’ll never know
To what extent we are machines

We let our garments
Do our talking for us
In speeches borrowed
From black and white movies
Old news reels
And Cole Porter songs
So that this weighty thing we share
Is nothing
More than the faint stirring
Of a martini

We exist in fading memories
Like yellowed photographs
Stuffed away in the back of a drawer
In an unread book
We mustn’t speak
Of what we’ve left behind

© David Rutter 2014

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. Between the Lines . 74

Not a single peaceful moment with Fairy Tail, eh? Lucy grumbled to herself as she took a drink of tea, a grouchy look on her face. She was grateful for the heated body pressed up against her back as she leaned against him. Her head tilted back to rest against his shoulder blade, and Natsu grunted to show he’d noticed.

Two days had passed since Loke had told them about what was going on, and Lucy was anything but happy. Natsu had come in only moments after she’d gone downstairs in search of Freed, and the second she’d seen smoke beginning to leak from his mouth, she’d nearly killed them both by jumping over the side of the balcony to put a stop to it. He’d barely managed to catch her, looking shocked by her action as she’d crushed them both against the floor.

Her action had been a success, though. He hadn’t used his magic, and she was sure he was safe.

Almost everyone in the guild had been ordered to the guildhall. Those who hadn’t been there before Juvia had fallen sick were ordered out, and even Porlyusica had reluctantly come back. Wendy and Gray had both fallen ill the day before, and Porlyusica had surprised them all when she’d barked out, “I’m rooming with the girl.”

To see her with such gentle hands taking care of the shivering Wendy was surprising enough.

To hear her gentle words nearly made Lucy weep over her lack of empathy towards the rest of them.

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Watch highlights from our sold out program with bestselling author Ta-Nehisi Coates last week!

. Between the Lines . 72

The grave was a beautiful one.

Natsu studied it as he stood awkwardly behind Lucy, who’d knelt before it with a gentle smile to touch the plaque beneath the obelisk, her fingers skimming over words that read:



X743 - X777

It was clear, he realized as he studied the obsidian structure towering over them, that at least one Spirit had made sure to have a hand in the design. A beautiful little patch of flowers would have surrounded them had it been spring, he realized, and the obelisk itself was a massive column that reached near ten feet tall. The signs of the Zodiac had been carved into it along with the names beneath each sign, and at the very top was a small spire that suddenly bent and curved in a golden swirl down the small tower.

No money had been saved when creating the grave. Natsu silently decided that it must have been an expensive endeavor, and he hesitantly moved closer to examine the materials. While he only collected gold, he knew such things well. And he recognized immediately what the gold engravings rested against.

“…this is hardened ash?” he said in a question, bewildered. “This is…Lucy, this is Igneel’s ash. The ash he creates when he burns things down.”

Lucy looked up at him in surprise. “…what?”

“Yeah, Natsu,” Happy huffed, confused. “What are you talking about? Ash is ash. Nothing to make sure you can tell any differences…”

Natsu rolled his eyes, touching the hard material gently as Lucy came to join him. He huffed. “I know what Igneel’s ash feels like. And I can feel the magic in it.”

“I don’t feel any magic,” Lucy mumbled, annoyed with herself. I’ll have some of the others teach me how to do something about that… “But I guess it could be if you really think it is…”

Lucy said nothing about how it was definitely more than likely Igneel’s ash. Apparently he and her mother had been good friends, after all… She grinned, cautiously deciding to suggest the idea. “Maybe they knew each other before Igneel disappeared and Mother got sick? I don’t know…it’d be interesting though, don’t you think?”

Natsu grinned at the thought, entertained. “Yeah, but it couldn’t have happened. Igneel rarely left his hoard alone before he disappeared. Even with the traps, he doesn’t trust Metalicana. Metalicana’s a sneaky little bastard that likes to see how far he can get when it comes to thieving from Igneel.”

“…does Gajeel try to do the same?” Happy asked, as if he thought the idea was beyond hilarious.

“…no,” Natsu replied. “If he did, I’d kill him.”

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TODAY at the Schomburg: Don’t miss your chance to be in the audience to hear a conversation between Mychal Denzel Smith and Janet Mock about his new book, “Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching,” in which he chronicles his own personal and political education during these tumultuous years, describing his efforts to come into his own in a world that denied his humanity.


Can’t get to the Schomburg? Watch the entire conversation online at any time here

. Between the Lines . 66

“Something wrong?”

Mirajane glanced up from the envelope she held in her hands, looking troubled. “…yes,” she said finally, answering her brother’s question and her sister’s curious look. As usual, they were the first ones at the guildhall. It was still dark out, nearly five in the morning. Elfman didn’t always come in with she and Lisanna, preferring to get more sleep, but he’d agree to help them finish taking down the Christmas decorations. “It’s just…we received a letter this morning, quite early considering the mailman doesn’t come around until noon.”

“Really?” Lisanna hung up her coat, rubbing her arms as she turned on the heating for the building. It would warm up soon, she hoped. “From who?”

“That’s just the thing.” Mirajane held the letter up, showing them. Both gawked at the scarlet seal that decorated it;one name written in beautiful calligraphy on the front of the letter: Makarov. “It’s for Master, but…it looks like…well, you know.”

“When will Master be in?” Lisanna mused.

“Soon, I hope…he usually comes in just a few minutes before the usual stream of people looking for breakfast comes. Natsu will be here bright and early, too, looking for Lucy. He said she should be coming back soon.”

“Don’t worry about it, Mira,” Elfman told her as he rolled up his sleeves, struggling due to the massive muscles he supported. “Master will be here eventually. There’s no rush.”

“I suppose you’re right…” Mirajane tucked the letter nervously into her dress, and then hurried to help start taking down decorations.

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REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN for our September 15 book discussion between C. Nicole Mason, author of Born Bright: A Young Girl’s Journey from Nothing to Something in America, and ESSENCE editor Vanessa De Luca!

RSVP is required, so click the image to reserve your seat in the audience.