Ars Poetica
Sara Michas-Martin

Alone, the student

scrubs the shadows, blends

and subdivides.


The look of mercury

reflected in the eye. No,


no a beauty that’s criminal.

A gold studded pasture, bodyscape

with wings.


The accuracy of wine bottles,

said the professor,

is the last thing I care about.


Other’s pallets bloom in their stalls.


His field

turns cistern then is scraped away.


Put thumbtacks in circulation, plaster

of paris, iodine in the linseed. Push


to another terrain.

Eyelash glued to bottom lip.

Juice stains on blazer. Wreckage,


inner wreckage, pylons and silos

of wreckage.


His shirt heavy

from the deposited paint.

Much better

when he smoked.

can I leave now, can I

go home.


His nose against the canvas—dirt soup.

From six feet, cacophony.


with the bottom rotted out.


No entry.            No mileage gained.

Daylight arrives

and it’s sickening.


Fall already. He sees a swath of red

in the line of trees—

someone overdressed,

a raised hand.