Mutual Understanding

April 2, 2010
The painter looks to his subject
and says she looks scared.
She glances to her right and says
that, indeed, she is afraid.
But now that he mentions it
she is less troubled -
because he just confirmed her
humaneness and so she wishes
he would hurry on and paint her,
so she is caught in this warm
moment of embrace and understanding
between fellow, fearful humans
about how scary the world can be.

He picks up his paint brush
that has been dipped in a flourishing scarlet
and says that he knows how she feels
except he doesn't understand how in
all our mutual understandings,
we can't seem to pause and help each other
nor make a difference in the nightmare.

She nods, and he tells her to stay still.

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