Making Art, poem by Tim Peeler

Mak­ing Art

He down shift­ed the Opal from third to second

As they approached the inter­sec­tion of Hook­er Road

And Arling­ton Blvd, swivel­ing his neck in an instant

Assess­ment as they sped on through the red light.

You crazy son of a bitch, his room­mate hollered,

Fight­ing the hot sum­mer wind to re-light a half-burned joint.

He was late; they had spent too much time arguing,

Then fight­ing after the intra­mur­al soft­ball game,

And now his mod­el would be wait­ing at the house,

The art class project due in the morning.

Two more run lights and a near crash at Elm and 5th

And he skid­ded to a stop on Avery Street,

Clat­ter­ing in his cleats down the sidewalk,

Smil­ing at her with his bust­ed lip and reach­ing out

His bloody-knuck­led hand; thank you so much

For wait­ing, he said in his pup­py dog voice;

Her hand held the green night­gown she’d picked out

For this por­trait he’d promised to copy for her

Boyfriend, and her beau­ti­ful face had the dark

Wor­ried look he would draw with­out the mark

He left there when she first refused to strip.

His room­mate lis­tened to them fight for the hour

It took the bong hits to do their work;

He’d heard it all before.

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