It’s been years since I thoroughly studied the unsigned painting of a fisherman that now hangs above the bookcase near the front entry here at my mother’s house. It was purchased long ago by my parents at one of the furniture stores in our old hometown — so long ago, in fact, that I can’t remember a time when the painting wasn’t around.

The fisherman’s simple wooden boat is near the bank of a wide, lazy stream. He’s standing in the rear, his back is bent, and he’s looking down at his hands. The stream reflects the trees along the water’s edge, and what must be the man’s humble little home, which is framed by low hills beneath a cotton-cloudy sky. Time of year: May, perhaps; or perhaps September. It’s hard to tell. There’s no smoke rising from the chimney. There is, however, the vague figure of a woman standing not too far away. She is obviously the fisherman’s wife. And something about her suggests that the fisherman is not leaving, but returning.

I had not noticed the woman before. Or at least I don’t remember noticing.

Judging by his posture, I’d say the man is in his fifties.

You see, my father loved to take an afternoon off every now and then during the summer and go fishing. And although he relished a meal of pan-fried rainbow trout, being away on a river or lake was the part of fishing that mattered to him most.

The man in the picture reminds me of my father. He doesn’t look like him, but there’s something about his general aspect that makes me feel I should finish what I’m doing here and join him. And why not? I’ve lived in paintings before. I like it. Sometimes it’s more real than the real thing.

Also by William Michaelian

Winter Poems

ISBN: 978-0-9796599-0-4
52 pages. Paper.
Another Song I Know
ISBN: 978-0-9796599-1-1
80 pages. Paper.
Cosmopsis Books
San Francisco

Signed copies available

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