The Old Painted Woman

By
She has a story,
I can see it in
the tired, gray
locks atop her skull.
She can't tell me
her story, for
her lips are
painted shut
for eternity.
But she can
show me her
story, easily.
I can see the
beginning in
the brushstrokes.
I can see the
climax in
the colors.
I can see the
future in
her vaguely
shaped hands.
The gate in
the background
is left open
with no latch
to keep it shut.
The flowers on
either side of
her body
tower so very
high over her head.
A path folds
out in front of
her feet through
the underbelly
of the grass.
A tragic life
is what I
can smell
in her
footprints.
Her closed
eyes gaze
at a blurry
image on
the horizon.
She grips
a red
symbol of
love in both
of her palms.
Her wrinkles
show me that
this love has
been long gone.
The vibrancy
of the flower
in her fingertips
shows me it
was a tragic ending.
He waits for her
where the
sea kisses the sky.





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