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The Muse

"I couldn't tell whether the sunset streamed Into her eyes or flowed out of them."
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Author's Notes

"The woman sat as was her wont Without a stitch of clothing on her Back against the generous trunk of a maple tree."

The Muse

(Raanana, March 31, 2019)

I feel a bitter pleasure in remembering that day

In the forest outside our small village.

I was walking down a leafy path

Toward the little lake where I would sit

By the water with my back against a smooth rock

To make some modest sketches

And write what came to me.

Down the shore a ways

The woman sat as was her wont

Without a stitch of clothing on her

Back against the generous trunk of a maple tree.

Her long thick hair the color of wheat

Gushed over her golden shoulders,

One eye was the color of dawn

And the other was sunset.

To tell the truth,

She was the reason I came down to the lake

Though I never had the courage

To speak to her. What could I say?

The blue sky deepened to cobalt

As the sun sank below the hills beyond the lake

And Venus was already where she was supposed to be.

I couldn't tell whether the sunset streamed

Into her eyes or flowed out of them.

From the corner of my eye

I noticed she was standing now,

Pulling a skirt up her long legs

Slipping her arms through a blouse

And putting her small feet into shoes.

Next thing I knew she was gone.

It's been many years since last I saw her,

I hardly go down to the lake anymore.

I can't rightly explain it but

The lake is just a lake,

The sunset's just a sunset,

And my pages lay blank

In one of the drawers.

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