Failed Erasure

During the day he made his living
painting houses and the interiors
of buildings, usually over old
faded attempts at constructing
somewhere else from where
they were.

He was assigned to paint
the inside of a warehouse,
and he felt the open can begin to fall
when he first saw all the walls.

They were covered in graffiti,
but the real kind that wasn’t
made to look professional.
Simple names in orange
or a dollar bill chewed
up by hazy scorpions.
They were the closest
living shadows worth
a while.

A woman in a purple dress
drinking from a maple leaf.
A dragon with a baseball glove
and sunglasses that didn’t fit
its eyes. Spirals cut through
everything to draw it all
together. They were separate,
but in someways all the same.

He tried to bring his roller down
and earn what he was paid,
but every time he went to start
something else out in the
background caught his eye.
He finally let the feeling die
and walked out to the street
and all its light was like
a bridge that lead back home.

He left the walls the way they were,
and never went to work again,
but made off for a place where he would
scavenge what he needed for a picture
that just wouldn’t leave his head.

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