There’s usually paint on my fingers

flecks, specks of cerulean, rose madder

like I climbed the sky’s ladder

rushed and brushed up against a sunset

crimson and wine dipped,

yes, dripping onto the floor,

yes, good, please smear that everywhere

I’m trying to pretend I’ve no reason to care if

my clothes are office ready

steady go

I’m making something here. What career?

/leans back, tipping chair/ I’m in the flow.

There’s usually paint on my notebooks

you’ll have to take my word that that word

was a work of genius, as now it’s just

an ochre smudge

/scrawls “what is art?” across a wall

as though that was somehow deep/

this is all mine

and you don’t get to judge.

It’s these gold marks, these sparks

that hold me apart

promising this artist’s a part of something

bigger than herself

/pretends not to hear you when you ask what/

There’s usually paint on my fingers

just one movement, colour falls

builds up against the walls, the windows,

/insists “it’s immersive!” to no-one in particular/

layered on layers to block out the light

if it’s on thick enough, perhaps you won’t see

the canvas, a bare square of white.