The day I saw these portraits I was, as often, head in sand Going about the day's routine, Run-of-mill, far from grand.
And the faces leapt out at me, Calling from the gallery wall, 'That mediocrity you're leaning on Could well be your downfall!'
Later, thoughts still jossling, I'm leafing through a pile, And out drops my own portrait - Old, and taken with such style - That I'm forced to find the contrast Between my visage and theirs, To expose a question underneath, Some gem hidden in the layers. So... Spot the Odd One Out. Well perhaps each, apart from me; Here I am, sitting sweet At the age of twenty-three. I recall so well the split Between heart and looking fine; The difference with these 'odd ones' Is that they didn't tow the line. Each drawing is created In lines made by different hands; Abstracted and pieced together Like maps from far off lands. Each stroke, each stride of pencil A journey to break free; An icon to their conviction, The split canvas a chance to see That our lives and our faces Are scored not through a single soul, But through the seeing of so many That makes what seems a whole. Meanwhile is my own image So solid, so sweet, so mounted? Am I just sitting pretty, Or will I stand up and be counted? Can I let the picture open So that passion gets a shout; So I can join them on the wall And be the odd one out? The journey is not so easy To break into unknown ground, But it is in making this pilgrimage That the creative life is found.