you can be the muse too
there is nothing to do here
but wait on the end or death
so i start watching a girl
with a sketch book.
she has a good pen and is
holding it sideways
sketching the guy sitting in front
she is working on the beard now
a long, red sage-like one
a whitman beard
that he keeps stroking while
the girl has to keep stopping
but she’s patient to a point.
it looks just like him.
then she puts the drawing away
and grabs another piece of paper.
she begins sketching the old woman
to her left.
the old woman is much easier.
and soon the girl has this fine ink
sketch of the woman, the back of her chair,
and even some of the speaker’s podium.
i look at the drawing and admire it.
in my notebook are bad poems
and a haiku with too many syllables.
my wife eyes me
then gives me a look.
i point to the girl, who has taken up
her drawing of the bearded man again.
“look,” i say, “we have an artist
in our midst.”
my wife looks at the drawing
then turns to me and whispers
“oh, i see that all the time.
people are always drawing other people.
there’s probably even a sketch
of you somewhere.”
i sit back in my seat to consider
a sketch of me sitting in someone’s
notebook or in a pile of their papers.
then i go back
to looking at the girl.
she’s on to someone else now
giving up on the bearded guy a
this time it is a woman with bright red hair
that tangles instead of curls at the end.
she’s doing a good job on her sketch too.
then i turn away
and look at my watch,
as the sun drops a little bit in the sky
and the tress begin to droop
toward the west coast.