Middle of a Room

by Edward Michael Supranowicz

Julie wandered the street like an orphan, an orphan of everything. Her clothes hung on her like she had slipped into them absentmindedly and was still trying to put them on. Her straight black hair was clipped into brutal bangs in the front and straight across on the sides and back, mementos of an angry day and a pair of scissors. She had a penchant for doing pen and ink drawings where the figures were decapitated and their heads were balloons on strings that they held in their hands.

We kept running into each other, quite literally, since we lived in the same building and she paid little attention to where she was going. I would not say we were lovers. It was just that she expected me to be in her bed when she woke up, just the same as she expected the bed to be there.

I wanted to talk to her that day, so I tried to catch her in the art building after class. As I walked past a door in the main hallway, my peripheral vision caught the image of a naked woman on an elevated chair. I knew that figure, and after a second, realized it was Julie posing on a platform, and this must have been a life drawing class.

I was neither angry nor jealous. The scene was unexpected and surreal, but in a bizarre sense, this was a self-portrait Julie was doing—a self-portrait of herself, painted in air and flash and the gazes of onlookers. And I realized I could only be part of her painting, not part of her life.

A realistic, charcoal figure drawing of a thin, nude woman standing upright.


by Donald L. Patten

Edward Michael Supranowicz is the grandson of Irish and Russian/Ukrainian immigrants. He grew up on a small farm in Appalachia. He has a grad background in painting and printmaking. Some of his artwork has recently or will soon appear in Fish Food, Streetlight, Another Chicago Magazine, The Door Is a Jar, The Phoenix, and The Harvard Advocate. Edward is also a published poet.

Donald Patten is an artist from Belfast, Maine. He is currently a senior in the Bachelor of Fine Arts program at the University of Maine. As an artist, he produces figure drawings and oil paintings. Artworks of his have been exhibited in galleries across the Midcoast region of Maine.

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