Immortal Art

#wednesdayPROSE

Brianna Fay

Published in “THE UNDERGROUND” literary journal

Winner of the Minerva Campbell Literary Contest

“Broken angels bleed immortal art.”

-Richard Matthews

I used to collect coffee mugs that I would store in my cabinet. Each of them had the name of an artist or author I loved and when everybody came to my flat to work or read a book I would give them their own coffee mug. Van Gogh usually sat by the window; he liked to watch the city instead of the television. Da Vinci liked to eat all of my chocolate when she thought I wasn’t watching. It inspired them and I still hope it inspires you because you were Picasso and I was Virginia Woolf.

You would sip from the homemade coffee mug with your name on it and stare at the canvas like you weren’t sure what was underneath—but there was something and that’s all that mattered. You’d stare for hours, seated on my kitchen floor while I typed away at my table.

Eventually you would get up, the painting not even stated yet, and take the coffee mug from my tender lips (maybe take a sip because you knew that I like hot chocolate in place of the bitter taste of the coffee bean) and kiss me until my knees were weak.

Just like that you would start the painting; like I was your muse. I loved being your muse.

But you were mine too and the thing about that is that it was so much harder for me. A painting is a painting. It’s over once done but I can’t stop writing about you. You’re everywhere.

It’s said that if you take a writer’s heart that you’ll live forever. Honey, you could have just smashed those paintings of me but they built skyscrapers of the stories I told about you.

When you left, your mug was put away. I was still Virginia Woolf, Nate was still Van Gogh and Cecile was still Da Vinci but none of that mattered anymore because when you left me behind you left the soul of Picasso gathering dust in my cabinet.

I know that you always told me that I thought like a mad woman. You don’t have to tell me twice that I sound like one now.

Our friends still come over to work every Thursday. They still read at my place on Saturdays and they still stay for dinner on Monday. We still meet for coffee every morning before work but it’s not the same. It’s not the same for them and it’s not the same for me.

Picasso is missing. What is the world without him? But I must remind myself that the world is not missing this artist—we are. I am. The world may continue with its mayhem and I may open my cabinet and wonder if I should wash that coffee mug. It’s been two weeks since anybody’s used it.

I don’t even miss you. I miss your smell and the taste of coffee in your mouth when you kissed me. I miss the way your hands caressed me at late hours. I miss the way you painted my face so that I looked beautiful.

I miss Picasso, not you.

Virginia Woolf and Picasso were only born a year apart from one another. I’m telling you all of this because she died nearly thirty years before him but I still find myself hoping that she lives ten times as long.

It’s like every time I open my cabinet to grab a mug for a friend and I see the one that used to be yours, I know that it just will never be true. I’ll simply live vicariously through you. Through my muse and through my work.

Broken angels, after all, bleed immortal art and I’ve always wanted Virginia Woolf to live forever.

Quote of the Day 2/23/21

Photo by Matt Hardy on Pexels.com

And in case it’s possible to forget–remember the world does not need your book. The world will go on just fine without it. There are plenty of wonderful novels, poems, stories, essays for many lifetimes of extraordinary reading, and so write out of necessity, out of personal privation, because you, and perhaps only you, need to read those words.

-Dinaw Mengestu

AFRAID by Drake Mason

California, USA

I’m Afraid


Of spiders with fingers that linger
Of creepy clowns with crooked frowns
Of frightful heights without the safety of plentiful light
Of a shark running rampant through an aquatic park


I’m afraid


Of ugly babies that give me the heebie jeebies
Of mounting due dates because I started school late
Of new faces that come with unfamiliar places
Of not talking to that pretty girl because when I see her my mind starts to whirl


I’m afraid


Of not having the conviction to better my financial restrictions
Of saying something offensive because I don’t want to be insensitive
Of speaking out of turn because sometimes I don’t understand what I should learn
Of my insecurities disallowing me to be the best version of me that I can be


I’m afraid


Of terrorism and generally most other “isms” too
Of fire because it burnt mine and my family’s homes
Of natural catastrophes destructive enough to bring society to its knees
Of a struggling economy and the growing dichotomy between those who should fix it

I’m afraid


Of telling my grandmother that I don’t believe in God because I know she’ll stop loving me

Key Largo (Editorial #1)

I’ve been in Key Largo for six weeks, nearly. I’m spending time here working on myself, working on some trauma I’ve experienced. It’s a great program, and I’m willing to get the details to anybody who’s experienced trauma as well. But I miss home.

I’ve been writing–more than I have since I was in college. I’ve been journaling, reflecting on myself, writing poetry, and crafting short stories. It’s so exciting to be putting the pen to paper again. It’s what inspired me to re-open A Pear is a Pear.

If you’ve ever been in eating disorder treatment, you’ve heard the phrase “A body is a body, is a body.”

One day, in my recovery from bulimia nearly a year ago, my treatment friend got a pear for snack. She loved pears. Soft pears. Ripe pears. The pears that you bit into and the whole thing just fell apart in your mouth. That is not the pear she got that day for snack. It was the rock hard, crunch when you bite into it kind of pear.

Another girl shrugged. “A pear is a pear, is a pear.” She said.

So what is a pear?

It’s a body, apparently. A body shape, in many magazines. A sometimes not-so-ripe fruit. You know what I mean, though. A pear, it’s a metaphor. Of course it is. (It’s always a metaphor.) A body is a body, is a body. All bodies are good bodies. A pear is a pear, is a pear. All pears are good pears.

Don’t be so hard on yourself.

Give your writing a chance.

A pear is a pear, is a pear.