The Object: Tube of Paint

This crazy canvas stares blankly at me every time I walk by.




Ever since this day—almost a full year ago–when I loaded up boys in a panic of optimism and flew to Michaels.

Because I had to have it.

Had to paint.

Because I was dreaming of Michelangelo.

And I have painted since. Two lovelies that were gifted to appreciative walls.

But this–this wallflower–remains bare.

Because I wanted it to be special.

Needed it to be special.

And I just haven’t had the time.

But I wonder…am I afraid?

I know that fear; the paralyzing terror of making first stroke, reaching first touch, writing first word, leaping into thin air…

And this leads me to wonder: where else is an empty place waiting? What else does fear leave pale and wanting?

The question carries me to my paintbox.

These lifeless tubes of paint hold power over me that I cannot give word to. I tremble when I take them out of their hiding place. My heart thrills.

And the setting up of the palette becomes this prayer…

alizarin crimson
cerulean blue
scarlet lake…

rolled up on end
like my tube of toothpaste

yellow ochre
burnt sienna

life hidden
fragile walls

give to me
your color.

sap green

to be squeezed out

give to me
Your water

and see me flow–
rivulets of

This prayer-poem responds to L.L. Barkat’s weekly poetry challenge. Visit her here to learn more about it.


  1. says

    Laura, every time you write a new poem, it’s like the building up of paint… richer, more nuanced… and I delight in it.

    This was truly beautiful.

  2. says

    ooooo…now I can’t wait to see the finished masterpiece!! I should write about the lesson God taught me with paint. The glory is you’re the artist. You get to choose when to stop, when it’s pleasing to your eye. Enjoy!

  3. says

    I just wrote you this HUGE note, and then blogger tells me there was an error!!! Anyhoo! HELLO! And how are you? Your poem, as ever, leaves me in awe… As for the canvas, I can so relate to your hesitation; I either want to savor, or just can’t ‘committ’ – funny creatures, we are… My 3 nephews (10, 7 & 5) painted over a massive canvas, that was pink, but is now grass green for their Mum; there was no holding back for them… It looks fantastic, with their varying strengths of stroke and movement… and I’m in awe of THEIR spirit and energy :)! Hope this finds you and your family well. I think of you often. Naomi x

  4. says

    Laura, your words are beautiful! I have always dubbed myself as un-imaginative because I usually have to literally see to comprehend. But each time I read one of your poems, I can actually visualize your words and feel a stir within my heart. You truly have a remarkable gift. Thanks for being willing to share that gift.

  5. says

    Oh the fantasies in my head of being able to paint…NEVER have I taken any kind of art class but I would love to have that gift…I so enjoy the results from others endeavors….seems like magic to start with a blank slate and watch something appear.

  6. says


    You hold a depthness of RICHNESS. Shower those gifts the Lord has blessed you with friend…..pour forth and watch His blessings pour as well.


  7. says

    I can’t wait to see the finished work of art!
    Go for it!!!

    You are an amazingly talented woman!!! I can’t imagine being able to write like you do AND have artistic gifts as well. Not fair. 😉

  8. says

    I delight in it
    you’re the artist
    stir within my heart
    seems like magic
    amazingly talented woman

    I can only echo what everyone else has already spoken…

  9. says

    I tried to paint a canvas within the last month. It was quite a fun adventure. I ended up singing wild and crazy country songs I made up to keep the flow. I started strong but didn’t finish. But hey, I tried. And it felt great.

    Paint on. Enter into the wonderful world of color.


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