some thoughts on becoming a painter person
when i was a girl i had a hand-me down pair of burgundy corduroys (they were a little
big), and i saved my allowance for months for a ribbed purple turtleneck with a silver
half zipper running up from my flat chest, with a hoop on the end. (if you are of a
certain generation you know the sweater).
i refashioned a heavy oblong gold link chain intended to hold back a curtain into a belt,
and i wore them all together. i thought i was seriously kicking.
when i was at my auntie Bea’s, dressed in my burgundy, purple, silver and gold, she
said “you clash”. i clash i repeated, “what does it mean to clash”? you don’t go
together, she replied. i don’t go together with what, i asked innocently, increasingly
aware my self estimation as seriously kicking was suspect,. i obviously wasn’t as grown
up as i thought, grown ups never clash, do they?
those were winter clothes and spring arrived with Irises in the garden, some purple,
some burgundy, the green glinted silver in the sun and the yellow striped centre
assumed a golden glow, all of it all together. they didn’t look wrong to me, and i hoped
nobody would extinguish the sun or crush the innocent flowers for their clashing
sometimes during heavy rain i wear all my most colourful clothes and i always seem to
run into Ray and Ray says that from a distance he always thinks there is a colour i am
not wearing, but the up close view proves him wrong. Ray has never once said, “you
clash”. Ray is a painter, and so am i.
penny eisenberg 2016