by E. Foss
There are no shades of grey with you!
Colour me in, Divine Leonardo!
Bring me to life with a splash of cobalt blue
A swirl of renaissance gold.
Some days, Lord, I feel like a botched job.
Mismatched paint misapplied.
Ok, if you don’t look too closely.
Acceptable in a certain light.
Let’s be honest. I’ll never hang in the National Gallery.
The Rokeby Venus need not fear.
But, Lord, I want to be beautiful.
To be admired, far and wide.
For critics to gasp at the fluency of my brush work.
The delicate balance of light and shade, just so.
It all started so well, too.
A blank piece of stretched linen, primed and ready
Full of possibility and promise.
The moment you gave me the brush it started to go wrong.
Why did you do that Lord?
Wasn’t it a little foolish – if you don’t mind me saying?
Wouldn’t it have been better just to let me watch?
There are only so many ‘happy little trees’ a painting can take.
And I wanted to be a Leonardo!
Instead, I’m just a mess. Car boot sale junk.
Surely this wasn’t part of your plan?
Beloved – who are you to judge?
Isn’t that the artist’s prerogative?
That would be me you know. And we’re not finished yet.
You are a work in progress. A living piece of art.
A true original. Not to be compared with others.
Who cares what the critics think?
They weren’t too keen on me if you remember.
Don’t be in such a hurry, my love.
Enjoy the making, the experimenting, the exploring.
The excitement of creating something new with me.
Let’s have some fun together! Let’s get messy with love!
Perhaps we’re more Picasso. Let’s see where it goes…
Is there freedom in a gallery?
Who wants to hang on a wall?
Not you, my love. You were made to be held.
Let me hold you.
Written while on retreat at St Beuno’s, September 2021