Life of an Artist: a Short Story

parisagain2

I did not want you to know the secrets I have been keeping from you. However, it cannot be a secret if you do not know the truth for certain yourself, can it? I knew I should have gone to the pharmacist and not to the art museum, but sometimes, art has the power to heal.

I have been sketching what I see for weeks now. Every Tuesday, a woman comes in with an elderly man, and she describes all the paintings to him in exquisite, heart-breaking detail. Her beauty is sturdy. She appears to be German. He is frail and walks as though all of his bones are broken. When they draw near, I see his hands are covered in liver spots, and his hair is sparse. She speaks loudly, and her voice is heavily accented.

This art museum is as quiet as a mausoleum the days the German and the elderly man do not come. On Mondays, children come into the art museum. They always start off boisterous and rambunctious, but once they see the art, they begin to settle, one by one. They are beautiful children with startlingly clear eyes. They do not speak much about the art or of anything else. They remain quiet, revered into silence.

It is amazing how great art can render someone to complete and utter stillness. Most days, I feel something stirring inside of me. A demand for something greater. But when I am at the museum, the stirring stops, I am still. I may draw. My pencil may brush across the page, but that action in and of itself is instinctual.

You told me I was beautiful once. It was enough to make me love you.

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