Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Are you an artist?

Ulysses and I were at the grassy playground near our house, and some neighborhood kids were there as well. The other big kids were out of earshot when a boy just in his early teens turned towards me.

"Are you an artist?" he asked.

I thought a moment before I said, "Yes. I'm a writer. I'm not a visual artist."

He smiled. "I knew it. I'm an ... inspiring artist." He looked quickly towards the other kids calling out to one another as they climbed along the swing, the slide, the lower branches of one of the pair of maple trees on the green slope, then he turned back to me. "I could tell," he said with a conspiratorial pride that lifted his chin as he spoke. He motioned towards my beret with a flick of his eyes. "Because of the hat."

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