Christopher Evans

Christopher Evans is a writer and editor from Vancouver, Canada. His fiction, non-fiction, and poetry have appeared in The New Quarterly, Going Down Swinging, The Literary Review, The Moth, and other fine publications.

This poem was initially conceived as a character sketch to be used in a fiction piece. The story never came together, but I was still interested in using art as a bridge to experiences outside one’s own.

 

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Christopher Evans

 

 

The Courtroom Artist Enters Her Blue Period

 

She trades her graphite for oils, traces

the high arch of the embezzler’s hairline

in cobalt, the jury monochrome,

gaunt, draped in denim, grand larceny

suffused with Prussian light

 

Any further questions

from the prosecution?

Your Honour, just one:

Has her objectivity been compromised?

 

No, only her palette, and the teal

saturation of the bailiffs’ concern,

the stenographer’s purpled fingers

forever adrift above the shorthand keys

 

Stretch of canvas, only a medium

between their violent world

and ours, her only jurisdiction

 

the thin viridian swoop

of the arsonist’s jaw