If I Could Paint

The following poem is a response to Country Living by Junior Creative Writing student, Meghan Carroll.  She wrote it as part of an assignment for Prof. Shara McCallum’s English 204 Creative Writing: Poetry class.



If I Could Paint

-By Meghan Carroll


If I could paint

I would do white and blue,

like the sky,

with tall grasses slipped, singing

yellowness yellowness

wined like oil (smooth, soft, slippery);

with the clocks of my fingers dripping,

flowering when pressed like:

sustenance from skin.


And then a star—

large, rusted,

a woman’s dead body or:

a she-Christ after sex.


If I could paint

it would be something pastoral,

but utopia visceral—

silked and wintered,

slept, swept, and broken,

something beyond water,

the salt of tears—


the half-mile between blooded pumps,

soft, hearted breathing,

the space beneath eyelids,

tapped fingertips,

and held-hips—


the white-clipped distance

between every closeness,

pillowed-out effluvium of feeling,

something only ever tasted,

and only once—


If I could paint

it would be


light, calm, frustrated preciousness

of the unknown.



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Lewisburg, PA 17837