Craig J. Hansen

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Isabel from painting class
Wrote herself a book
About her insecurity
I was in the book
As a caricature
Of a smiling jock
With an empty head
But that just wasn’t me
I stayed up late most every night
Writing bad poetry.

Isabel from painting class
Sat right across from me
She hardly ever spoke a word
She spent her time
Looking past my head
Out the window, wistfully
I think even then
She was writing her book
About the perils of 17.

I wonder if she ever knew
I painted her portrait
As she sat across from me
All in purple paint
She looked kind of mad
Her fingers spread on the table top
Her eyes stared back at me
Her purple hair
Was hanging down
Like Victorian drapery.

For that piece of art
I won a prize
In a small town gallery
The purple girl
With angry purple eyes
I kept that painting
It’s upstairs
Where people seldom look
Isabel from painting class
Who put me in a book.

©2021 Craig Hansen