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Man in the Boat
by Jane Lang

He is still a young man
Where did all his lofty ambitions
high ideals, potential go and,
how did they so quickly flee

His art called, he sat at cafés on the
Left Bank with students discussing
light, shadow, galleries, possibilities
smoking Gauloises, drinking absinthe

Amour, the culprit; too quickly a
child, eyes black as raisins, too
quickly plans of the past turned into
the realities of this and future days

Not life as he envisioned, but as far as the
eye can see, green rolling hills, his legacy
the beautiful, seductive madamoisselle, his
lover, the holder of his heart, his destiny

His life is full of questions, rippling across
blue crystal water: art, love, land, laughter,
all part of him. Pictures form, shine brightly
in his mind, await a tentative brush-stroke

after Boating, oil on canvas, 1910, Milwaukee Art Museum  

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