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Palimpsest

(after Basquiat)

*

Words scrawled over
older paint dig down
through canvas
in pursuit of birth
and before. Whether

a hopeful pinch of oil
can illuminate time we have
yet to see. Blind
and palming hallway
walls and hells

of mostly our design.
And if, as we chase time
and paint that oil should set
the flame to shine
our bones bright for showing, what then?

Then bones are burnt
to ash. In gritty, lamp
black paint, the line
circles back. Then
nothing is erased. And

mostly anyone is to blame, old
blamelessness gone
bust. Plus, it is art
we are running with
that throws us under the bus.

The brushes dried
to crust. Once wet,
the paints are bushed.
So many trips out packing trash
and still the basket spills.
Posted 04/19/21
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