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A Mother's Advice to Her Children

If you ever get the chance, live with an artist.
Live with an artist and you begin to notice
the shapes of things. 
Even the air around the enormous
sprig of forsythia
in the beer bottle,
the way its presence
makes the room fade away,
its relationship with the white wall,
its simple canvas.

Live with an artist and expect food
to slow cook all day
just for the odors of chiles,
the moisture in the kitchen
the falling apart of the meat inside the pot.
You needn't gather the cats.  They will find you.

Move in with an artist at least once.
Plant plenty of daffodils,
whatever you can afford. 
And study the light
all day and in every season
before you decide to do
much else.

Live with an artist. 
Stay as long as you can. 
Leave if you must, then live with
an accountant.

"A Mother's Advice to her Children" was published in The Colorado Lawwyer, Fall 2008, placing second in the poetry contest.

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