KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 2: Winter 2015
Poem: 216 words [R]

Staying Put

by Alexis Rhone Fancher
after Edward Hopper’s painting, A Woman In The Sun, 1961
He paints me naked in an empty room. 
Like I need nothing. Like he needs me. 
I’m his type. 
High tits. Lean shadow, 
blond hair falling 
past my shoulders. 
A long drink of water. 

There is no escape. 
But the window to my left is a promise. 
Wide open. Green hills, ripe with longing. 
“Hold still!” he says. 

So I stare at the painting on the wall. 
Another landscape, this one contained
by a white mat, black frame, 
it, too, allows for dreaming. But it only 
goes so far, then hits the wall. Like him. 
Only so far before he drops off-grid and 
disappears into the canvas. No 
wonder I can’t stay still. 

The room holds little. A bed, my shoes 
abandoned underneath. A pack of 
cigarettes. My restless heart. A rectangular shaft 
of light pours in from an open, second window and 
the breeze plays with my hair. 
“Fix it!” he says. 

I tuck the wisp of hair behind my right ear, 
just the way he likes it, then put my hand 
back where it belongs. 

He says his favorite thing is painting sunlight 
on the side of a house.
“So why paint me all the time?” I ask. 
“So you’ll stay put.”

—First appeared in the anthology, In Gilded Frame (Kind of a Hurricane Press) and later reprinted in their 2013 anthology, Best of Storm Cycle; republished here by author’s permission

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