Picasso Ruined Me

Katie Dorfman


A blank canvas crisping in fire.
I need to cleanse it, ghezzo my soul
but he tie-dyed his laugh in my creases
knotted his tongue in my throat, 
sickly rubber bands.   

Where do my vocal cords end and his paintbrush begin?
No one asks how the painted feel.
A dried cockroach on a Jackson Pollock.
We Renaissance women, naked chorus of Eves
dancing for his entertainment.
Only to realize   

we never escaped His garden.
Forever wallowing in his watercolor.
If tears were cobalt blue my insides 
would be a twilight sky, a twisted ocean. 
If his acrylics taught me anything it’s black isn’t one color, but many. 
Under Plato’s cave bakes burnt sienna and umber. 
Cadmium red and crescent yellow.   

In our cherry pitted parts
carved by his palette knife
walks a willful fire.
I quickly burn
and shed like the Garden Snake.
Slithering out of his painting
and into my own.
And how bright the sun feels on my face.   

And how marvelously yellow and sweet the dandelions are            up here,
where air is fresh
and women paint
unapologetic self-portraits. 




About the Author:

Katie Dorfman is a sophomore at the University of Michigan majoring in Psychology and Creative Writing. She is from New York City and enjoys photography and painting.

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