Open Window, or: My Insides Look Like A Matisse

this is my favorite painting.

when i was fifteen i visited the national gallery, which happened to be showing a lot of matisse. his colors struck me first. without much thought, i bought a postcard of open window.

a few weeks later my parents separated. walls fell. oh, they immediately tumbled. what was left was the core of me, this very vulnerable but very authentic self that i hadn't ever met before. my internal demolition also knocked the words out of me. i found myself struggling to verbalize, struggling to feel understood. the little postcard hung on my wall.

i went to park city a few months later. in a tiny art gallery on main street, i found myself in front of a picasso sketch. i remember this feeling vividly. i remember feeling bright blue like a mylar balloon. my mind was clear.

so it was then that i noticed the connection i had with art. paintings and i, we both couldn't speak. we were made up of colors. i carefully collected postcards and hung them on my bedroom wall. i laid on my bed for hours just looking at them. we understood each other. they still decorate the walls inside of me.

we often talk about tearing walls down like its winning, like a person belongs to you if you can get past theirs. but walls are valuable. protection is important. walls are meant to make homes. the danger comes when we create our own cages.

it was one of those days, those silent afternoons studying brush strokes, that i began construction.

and here i am. i have walls. they are a gallery. they are malleable. they are the color of roses and emeralds. they are frescoed lavender. and they frame many, many open windows.