Sketches – 68

The sepia present.

Is that a sepia-tone painting?



No, it’s representative of
Our current times.
How we may look back on them
Forty years from now

So as quaint and out of fashion
As faded black-and-white photographs?

More like lithographs,
But yes

And what do you see
As the essence of our times?

I haven’t worked that out, but,
Blindness and hubris are in there.
We cannot see what is right in front of us.
Most people have stopped looking,
Unless they think there’s a good
IG post to be seen.

And the hubris?

Oh, that’s everywhere.
We are trying to create
Artificial intelligence
Without genuine wisdom;
Machines can learn, but
Kids are left untaught;
And we sit in judgment of all
Previous generations and societies,
As though we are so much better.

That’s a poem right there

Now it needs to become a painting.
Do you mind cooking tonight?

No problem.
How about chicken curry,
Squash, and whole grain bread?

That’s hubris, right there,
Thinking you can pull that off

But it’s more or less sepia

Then I’ll more or less
Try to eat it

Sketches – 67

“It’s easier for guys…”

If anything happened to me,
Would you remarry?

I don’t think so

Why not?

I’m weird, I’m
Hard to get along with.
There could never be anyone
As perfect for me as you

I think women would be
All over you

Then your hypothetical future
Looks nothing like the past.
What about you?
If anything happened to me,
Would you remarry?

It’s easier for guys.
You stay attractive as you age.
Men just want younger women

So guys are shallow for seeking youth,
But young women aren’t shallow for seeking
So-called ‘high status’ older guys?

That’s actually a fair point

And anyway, guys are attracted to you

Yeah, well, don’t die, is my advice

Then you can’t, either


You want to stop at
This next exit and get a drink?
It says ‘cougars welcome’

It says ‘coupons welcome’

I was only three letters off

You’re right.
You are weird

Sketches – 66

Truth and lies

Are you listening to jazz?


Are you listening to jazz?
Because that sounds like —

… Miles Davis, yes.
Kind of Blue.

Of course

I have a question.
Have you ever lied to me?

Ummm… yes.


Just now.
When I told you I’d lied to you

It’s too early for logic puzzles.
I started to write down
All the lies my dad told us.
It would take less time
To write down the number of
Truthful things he’d ever said

Oh, love, I’m so sorry.
You don’t talk about him much

He’s gone now.
I mean, he always was, but
Gone irretrievably,
You know

But you loved him

Loved and hated, yes.
Still do.
Always will, I guess.
He would tell my sister and me
About the new house he was going to build for us:
Beside the ocean, on a hill,
Where I would have a pet dolphin,
And she would have
Her own flock of seagulls…


I think I realize now,
Lies were the best things
He knew how to give us.
The world seems a pretty dark place
To a little girl who can’t
Trust her father.
But that house,
The one he was going to build —
That was beautiful

Have you ever painted that house?
The way you imagined it?

Every painting I paint is that house,
In a way.
I’m always trying to bring the past back…
And fix it

But you work so hard
To be truthful and accurate
To what all actually occurred…

When people think they know,
And you show them that they’re mistaken,
They may grudgingly agree,
But you’ll always feel like a liar to them

Ok, you topped my logic puzzle

But you understand, right?

I think so

Where are you headed now?

To wash my car.
Need anything while I’m out?

Bring back more tissues, please


Sketches – 65

No blue here

Do you know it used to be
By far the most expensive pigment
For artists to buy?

No, I did not

If you look at old paintings,
You’ll realize
Many of them have
Little to no blue in them.
So I’m doing this series
With no blue

It’s weird to think
Of blue being hard to come by

It’s weird to think, period.
Art should make people think

All art?

Yes, but
The kind of thinking varies.
It doesn’t have to be
Terribly serious
All of the time, however.
But thought, yes

So will one day
This be called part of your
Lack-of-Blue period?

No, it will be part of my

How about I let you work?

Good, I’ll see you around dinner time.
What are you making?

Plans to cook dinner, apparently.
It will be good, don’t worry.
No blue dye of any kind

Now you’re getting it

Sketches – 64

Home late

Hi, there

Well, hello, love.
How was your shower?

The new hot water heater
Actually heats water, so…
How was work?

Long. The new position
Is starting off busy

Busy is good, though, right?

Yeah, at work.
How did it go at the gallery today?

S l l o o o o w w w …

Ugh. My day sounds like it was better

What did you end up having for dinner?

Two Coke Zeroes and a Nutri-Grain bar.
I’ll grab an apple before I take my shower.
What about you?

I scrambled eggs.

I’m sorry I missed that.

And now I have a few hours of watching nothing but FLUFF planned.
Hallmark channel.

Do you want to go see “Tolkien” this weekend?

What’s that?

You haven’t seen the ads?
Sorry, dumb question.
I think it’s about how he met his wife
And how it shaped his writing

Sure, sounds good.
How long has it been since we’ve been to a movie?

Too long

Do you want to go over to the Peachtree?
They have that deal where we get
Two large drinks, forty-three boxes of candy, a semi full of popcorn,
And an angioplasty, I think

Worth the extra five mile drive, that is.
It’s a date.

Before you take your shower, though,
I have a question…

Which is?

Have you ever felt how soft this towel is?

Not recently

You might want to try it.
Just make sure it hasn’t changed

Sounds like good advice
For many situations


Sketches – 63

Oranges vs sausage biscuits

A sausage biscuit, huh?
Don’t you want an orange instead?

Maybe I’ll have one after.
Unless you just, you know —
Want some of my biscuit, maybe?

Me? Eat sausage? Hahahaha — okay, sure

Here’s half

And here’s half of my orange

Marriage is full of tradeoffs.
We should have worked food negotiations
Into the wedding vows

I think it’s covered under
“… to love and to cherish…”

How so?

You love sausage. But if you cherish me,
You’ll share your love of sausage.

That’s how to interpret that?

I’m pretty sure

Logic. It’s what’s for dinner

And breakfast

Sketches – 62

Mornings. And chaperones.

Good morning, love.
How’d ya sleep?

Like a baby

So, you slept well?

No, I woke up
Every two hours crying.
Yes, I slept well

My, aren’t you cranky

No, I just…
I just had some work stuff
Come in last night
I’m trying to get done now.
You know, before
I actually go to work

So I’m bothering you?
Am I in your space?
Do you feel violated?

… okay that was funny.
No, this is just my
“I’m working and trying to concentrate” face

Kind of scary.
I don’t recommend you overusing that
If you can help it

You are up early…

I’m going with our niece and nephew
To the zoo today

Don’t they have school first?

It’s part of school.
I am a chaperone

Don’t they usually want
Responsible adults?

… okay that was funny, too.
My sister couldn’t go, so I volunteered.

Cool. Hope you have fun.

A bus full of second and third graders.
I’m sure it will be… something.
Maybe fun

Bring me back something
From the gift shop

Maybe a sloth, to commemorate
How fast you are getting that
Work done

Or maybe a tiger.
You remind me of a tiger

Because…? Is that a sexual thing, or…

No, it’s supposed to be a compliment.
I failed compliments in school, though.
I “didn’t bring proper materials to class”,
Or something

I can teach you how to give a compliment,
If you would like


Enjoy the zoo.
It’s so good of you to take your sister’s kids there.
You are one of the best people I’ve ever known.
It’s one of many things I love about you.
The depths of your awesomeness are … unplumbed

If I had actually said that,
You wouldn’t have believed it.
That’s what we call “overselling”
Where I come from

I’m not the one who failed compliments
Is all I’m saying

Enjoy the zoo

Enjoy not getting your work done