I’m not here to paint sunsets, sand dunes,
or grinning, freckled redheads for posters,
but I’ll show you the fox limping on asphalt
in its trot between bin after bin of waste
in search of scraps to regurgitate to its kits.
And I’ll show you the homeless eyes watching
the fox between impatient scans of sidewalks
for any cigarette butt with two drags left.
I’ll show you the teenage girls with their big
purses slung over their shoulders filled with
their necessities: snarls of tissue, Vaseline,
KY, condoms, and blackening crack pipes.
So for you, a painting of the Charlottetown we
see every day—I’d work in the oils of your words,
but I wish this piece to last longer than a breath.