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Contents Page: July 1, 2011, vol 7 no 2

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Peter Newton


Simple Folds

I'm here for a late lunch and to see how the mural's coming along. One of the waiters has a brother who's an artist. He's self-taught but shows a talent no one denies. He's been painting the mural in the slow times for weeks. It's on the far back wall of the restaurant. A massive scene of a small harbor and the surrounding landscape. A square-sailed boat is coming into port. Grass-roofed huts line the beach, almost expectantly. It's a tan landscape with ocean blue highlights above and below. A balance, I think, with everything that's going on between.

High up in the hills, herons nest in simple folds. It's a portrait of calm. The artist himself paints so slowly he almost disappears. The restaurant is nearly deserted as I knew it would be and I can hear the sound of his horse-hair bristles stippling the sky. I look up again and a few stragglers from the flock are shrouded in mist.

Maybe an hour goes by. The waiter whose name I've never known brings my fortune with the check. I stand to leave just as the painter finishes a man who is wading the rest of the way in to shore, towing his skiff. There is the slightest glint of little fish in the water ahead.

spring frogs . . .
softening the sound
of traffic


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