His Final Piece
The artist leaned over his latest work,
It’s peaceful now and clear to see
a masterpiece took place.
But something’s different this time,
things seem to be surreal.
His torturous other half
was silenced by his brush.
The setting hues of amber sun beam
down on his bedroom canvas.
What started as his spouse’s portrait
became adulterously abstract.
He painted the male subject violently
with slashing strokes to capture
the distinctions of his neck.
His wife was painted more delicately
to capture her sullied elegance.
First he painted along her ribs,
stealing the screams from her lungs.
Carving down her torso, his wife
spilled her guts to him, but still speechless
from shock. She had given him his heart,
so he rightfully took what was his.
The artist kissed his wife
one final time to inspire his finishing strokes.
Her eyes were closed, as were his, as he raised
her chin just so. He inhales and then strikes
her neck as paint splatters on his face.
The stale odors of the drying paint seep across
the room. He wears the stains on his shirt
like a red badge of courage.
His eyes soak in every fume, nose inhales
every color. The vibrant reds and tattered
clothes are detailed so justly.
The artist knows his work is lifeless,
yet its beauty calms his nerves.
Tranquility consumes the artist
now that he’s mastered his final piece.
The artist, can finally rest.
rocking in his chair, the artist must digest.
– Dave Knowlton
The Sorrow of the Weeping Willow
Why does the willow weep as if curse’d
by a witch’s spell. To be cast away
from whom it loves with so much left unsaid.
Shackled by roots the willow wallows day
after day. Every branch a memory
of a moment it can’t have back. Its heart
aches and cracks the bark that tells its story
of love gone to waste before it could start.
And so the willow weeps a pond of tears
right beside it. It’s life-like reflection
sways the same way when a spring breeze appears,
but it’s deceived by rippling rejection.
The willow’s sorrow remains and runs deep
In its roots. Cursed to be alone and weep.
Comes when it’s four in the morning and
you’re scraping your drawers for every last
sediment of pot so your mind can hopelessly
keep itself afloat for the next odd some minutes.
Wallowing in self-pity and weakness
for no apparent reason other than to bitch
about your own apathy. Always settling,
never striving. You don’t seize the day because
you don’t have a shadow. Just the fear of failure
stepping on your heels. That’s why you
drown in an empty bottle of Lagavulin,
where there are no rocks
in the bottom of your glass.
Just that burning hickory liquor
used for a blanket on the
There are many reasons to love her beauty:
The way the sun gleams off the seas of
her cerulean eyes. They guide me to her
like a lighthouse for the old sea captain.
Her chestnut hair falls to her shoulders with
the exception of the strands tucked
behind her ear like curtains being drawn
to unveil the perfectly composed orchestra
that is her face.
She shoots a smile like a gun slinger and
her lips are the smoking barrel. The high noon
sun is the spotlight upon her nearly flawless
face. Flawless except for the one imperfection,
the freckle perched just above her lips. It sits
alone, an outcast of her face telling stories of
secrets her lips dare not speak of. So little,
so inviting; to sit beside and hear the stories
of what truly makes her perfect and how
she was marked with this entrancing beauty.