by Lawrence J. J. Leonard
“Stir the can until bubbles come to the surface.”
The color was chosen after long hours of comparisons.
Me and the paintbrush will commit to the change.
The first coat lays thick, a pudding of sorts,
which flows down the side of the wall with ease.
The bristles demand reflected light with every new stroke.
The odor of latex and tint yield their pale fumes.
No one thinks this smells lighter than air.
The subtle drift nauseatingly sweet.
Gradually Harry’s presence surfaces in this endeavor.
I can feel all the times he held my unsteady hand
and remember all the projects where he conscripted my service.
How to “be neat and meticulous and
go with the grain of the wood.”
Enter the Wiseman and his mastery of not leaving wiggly lines.
The brush seems to get heavier as time minces forward.
Switching grips, switching hands, switching directions.
Nothing helps. Can hardly focus or spread the bright tone.
Eventually the color claims its new territory. I can’t remember doing this.
Was each section handled with care and attention?
I look back now. There to see the master brushstrokes of Harry’s hand.
Love you, DAD!
RIP Harry Joseph Leonard (1917 – 1991)
Copyright © 1960-2016 Lawrence J. J. Leonard All rights reserved