ART( A 3 Part Poem)


(The Business End, The Arrival of Inspiration, & The Feeling While Making It)


(part 1) The Business End of It

making reprints from a piece that should only be made once,

for one, by one, no 2 of 30’s, no time for this,

sending submissions to a faceless judge,

a judge that has no clue of the flue you suffer with,

the money we spend on postal stamps, postal fees, postal handling,

sending 1st class work by 3rd class priority,

playing the role of the used car salesman,

serving up fruit to ripe to be shared yet,

cover letters, photos, emails, slides, biographies, footnotes, margins,

indented paragraphs, links, requirements, guidelines, and artists statements,

dealing with editors and critics,

board members and rich house wives placed on panels,

all who went to school to learn…

what the essence of a poem, painting, sculpture, or photo should look like,

all while we uneducated anarchists crawl through the gutters of the night,

desperate in the idealistic excavation of inspiration,

producing products from an “Out of the Lines” coloring book of strategy,

we tack red ribbons to insecurity,

we use spell check and proper grammar when introducing non conformity,

preying that the Art you made wasn’t to original for their Argyle socks


(part 2) The Process of Feeling It Come On

the discreet reflection prior to collision,

the cigarette that lights the next with a chaser of instant coffee,

watching another persons feelings from a distance,

their emotions hovering above their heads,

like white bubbly captions used to show dialogue between cartoon characters

their introspection shouting to be noticed,

I jot the scene down in my pocket journal,

emphasizing my appreciation for their doubt,

hoping through osmosis that a connection will be fastened,

it begins to build, a desire grows towards the idea of a painting,

paintings that will hang on the walls in other people’s living rooms,

a way of communicating with them when I’m not there,

knowing that if I leave the Art a bit unfinished,

that it will only leave questions,

what a beautiful theory, to build something that only creates questions,

gives no answers, states no facts, so it can never be wrong,

insisting on nothing but breaking the stale air in a room,

Artists adore the invitation from the random objects in a room,

we live for those days when everything we see grows a voice,

when the Protons in a Tupperware bowl evolve into 10,000 little mouths,

speaking to us, letting us know,

about the disagreement between the orange and the apple residing in it,

or when a junkyard filled with the graves of dead cars,

cries out for the empathetic touch of a mechanic,

or maybe when a ring of keys diagnosed with O.C.D. are left on a sticky bar,

its anxious calls for help begging to be rinsed,

possibly it’s a book sitting on the shelf at the Dollar Store that sings to us,

or the forgotten hairbrush left atop the fridge,

left by a stranger who spent the night weeks ago,

these are the moments that cause us to know that its time to create,

to build immediately and to abandon all other plans,

knowing that anything created right now might be questioned forever


(part 3) The Process While Making It

black butterflies in strobe light flickering through our synapses,

leaving trails of metallic rainbows as tasteful as lobster tail dunked in butter,

exposed evidence around the chin from the fumes of aerosol,

brush strokes point the finger at the integrity of the question posed,

hearing nothing, tasting nothing, smelling nothing, yet feeling everything,

decisions screeching bye like the Q train through Brooklyn,

creating an outline, one you know you’ll never adhere too,

we feel like grasshoppers jumping from bridges,

bridges way to high for their suspension,

we become the lead character in the roles in others lives,

a serotonin splash rippling throughout our pelvis,

causing our soul to move as does a slinky, giving weather to Spring,

the confidence that ensues allows us to shed away the diagnosed labels,

the scary titles that stoic doctors brand us with,

we pick out a $9 X-mas tree so we can afford one more gallon of paint,

we feel it all beginning to connect if even only for a moment,

a singular Scrabble letter found on the closet floor,

becomes the finishing touch to the sculpture we started 8 months ago,

everything feels new like a freshly opened canister of tennis balls,

we know we have to ride it till it snaps,

because while we are building it we are Gods,

charmed vessels balancing the waves between ego and humility


By: Bryan Matthew Boutwell /