The Artist

photo by hungrybison

He sat in the chair drunk, watching TV, naked bar a tattered stained robe with a small amount of amphetamines in the pocket. He was starving, his stomach contained nothing but whiskey. He couldn’t be fucked making himself anything to eat and even if he wanted to there was nothing in the kitchen. Alcohol always took priority when it came to his money .

He was a ghastly creature, bent by age and the affects of years of excessive drinking. His hair had grown thin, his eyes yellow, his teeth black. His once handsome features were now hidden behind an unkept beard. His body smelled of sweat and piss. He had once been something of a local celebrity, now he was nothing.

He was an artist when he was younger, a painter, a writer and a photographer. He knew people and people wanted to know him. He had come to San Francisco from the coal regions of Pennsylvania in the spring of 1949. He headed west to reinvent himself,  as there was no future for him in Pennsylvania. It was like living in Hell where he grew up, fathers and sons worked on coal faces, there was the dust, black lung, and death. Fuck, he didn’t want any part of that life.

By 1949 the American Dream had replaced the pre-war stagnation of the country. Broken men and heroes fled the dismal urban landscapes and built suburbia; creating another living hell of socio-economic and cultural inferiority based on conspicuous consumption. The cities died. Other than New York, the East was dead. The West Coast, however thrived. He was going to go to San Francisco, he was going to live it up.

It was a time when a generation went crazy, drinking booze, playing music, writing, reading and fucking. He had come to join in the movement, to express himself in his art. He soon held a place on the “stage” with the other artists, smoking weed, philosophising and hanging out. He discovered he had an option other than masturbation. The girls dug him, even though he rarely had more than 5 bucks in his pocket. He wore the same clothes for days on end and would smoke cigarettes discarded  in the street by Negroes, but  damn he was fucking a lot of women. Good looking, free thinking women not like the bleak women he remembered in Pennsylvania who resigned themselves to spend their lives with the miners. He was making a name for himself. He was young and alive.

Now, years later, he was something different. He felt aged and spent. Gone were the days of creativity and young girls offering unlimited pussy. In the atmosphere of the open sexuality of San Francisco, he was in his element,now he was a relic. His friends from the past were either dead or fucked up by years of drug abuse. He was alone.

His story had become uninteresting, his art forgotten. So he drank, watched reruns on TV, jerked off and dreamed of Pennsylvania.

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1 Comment

Filed under art, creative writing, lonliness, love, micro stories, original photography, original writing, short stories, Short stories and essays, thoughts, writing

One response to “The Artist

  1. Interesting read…. thought provoking….

    Thank-you!!!

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