i visit van gogh on a day when i am tired and soft in my vulnerability
breathe quietly and try to remember how to beat a heart in time
my veins stutter and i press quaking fingers to my wrists
my isolation is heavy on my shoulders.
this is something i have made for myself
out of wastes and dark, thickly hot deserts
there is nobody to blame for this but myself
i have buried myself
but with that, there is no one left to leave flowers on my grave
van gogh remains silent.
stuck in a painting
st-a r ry ni g-ht.
my hands itch for a pen.
for a keyboard.
i push them into my coat pockets and tilt my head
try to look at this painting differently
i am alone in this art gallery.
people mill around me
but i am the only one who does not move
feet planted solidly in front of beauty
i can feel the tears start to rise
my eyes turning shiny and watery
i can feel my sadness well like blood in a shallow cut
van gogh says nothing
trapped in a painting
“you were sad too”
and i am stuck in a space right then
between real and tired and blurred
and the beauty i can sink myself into
pull the ethereality hanging like mist around that artwork
over my shoulders like a shroud
cover myself with it
choke myself with it
i cannot remember what it is to breathe
tears spill over
track down my cheeks
the other gallery-goers do not notice
van gogh gazes without opinion from his canvas
i am vulnerable
a million brushstrokes
an artist’s remorse
and a poet’s death.
art blues (i never liked monet as much as you) // H.S.