Pictures In My Pencils
An Ode to the Colored Pencil

I have a tale to tell you now
of pencils, color, books and how
it came to be that we'd be here,
discussing published books, so dear.

When just a lass in second grade,
dear Ms. Sudduth, my teacher, said:
"Oh, my! That's great!" about barn I drew,
the best drawn barn she ever knew!

That's the day my fate was sealed,
and I began this path for real.
Pencils, paper, pens and brush,
and all the art I love so much!

Wildlife, nature, oils and pen,
watercolor, scratchboard, charcoal ... then
I learned perspective, shadow, form ...
My draftsmanship? Way past the norm!

The years flew by, I drew and drew!
At work, at home, and freelance, too!
Hobby ... career ... I could not say ...
I simply drew most every day.

But twas one tool I had not tried,
though all these years my craft I plied:
a colored pencil, soft and bright ...
a few strokes made ... Oh! What a sight!

It's sharp! It's clean! It doesn't smear!
It lays down color, bright and clear!
Details! Layers! Draw till done!
Never had I had such fun!

Forsake, I did, my pens and brush ...
Laid them down and then I rushed
down paths and roads I never knew
of color, wax, and sharpeners, too!

All went well for quite a while ...
drawing ... coloring ... it made me smile!
But there was something I did not know,
and very soon, I'd get a show ...

Late one evening when all was quiet,
and time to turn in for the night,
bumps and noises came down the hall,
from my studio, dark and small.

I tiptoed in, flipped on the light,
my jaw fell open at the sight:
Pencils I had put away – after such a busy day –
were on my table dancing 'round,
and from them came such awful sounds:

"Help us! Help us! Oh, can't you see?
Our pain! Our ache! Our misery!
So full we are! We just might burst!
Come here now and do this first ..."

Before I could collect my head
And understand just what they said,
They flew, they lept into my hands,
continued voicing their demands:

"Get it out!" they pled, they screamed, they cried,
"Empty out this stuff inside!
It hurts! It aches! We need relief!
No more pressure would be so sweet!"

Now in my hands and zoom, zoom, zoom,
they drug me way across the room!
And at my table sat me down
"Draw, draw, DRAW!!!" was now the sound.

And draw, I did, I had no choice.
The pencils cried with one big voice,
"Relief at last! It feels so good!
"Finally! We've been understood!"

Although I didn't, it was true,
I still obeyed and drew, drew, drew!
Into the night and then the dawn,
At last surveying what I had drawn.

Drawings, drawings, piled high and deep
And all those pencils? Fast asleep!
Though tired and spent, I had to know ...
"Explain to me this freaky show!!!"

The Peacock Green raised up his head
He yawned and stretched, and finally said,
"We got too full, we got too stout,
We needed you to get it out!"

"Get WHAT out?" I asked, confused,
(and, frankly, miffed the others snoozed!)
"I'm tired, I'm beat, I need some rest
and you guys only play and jest!
Explain yourself! I don't care how!
I want answers! Tell me NOW!"

He cleared his throat, he looked dismayed,
A brief glance down, and then he said:
"It's not easy to explain, you see,
what's inside my friends and me."

About that time the Peach awoke,
Then Deco Pink ... then Sand ... they spoke:
"Oh, thank you, thank you!" they said to me,
Relief at last! We now can see
how much we need you every day
to come and clear the pain away!"

"I do not understand one bit,
Your problem nor my part in it.
I'm tired, I'm ill, I want to leave
So please explain this all to me."

The Peach announced, now wide awake,
and joined by Beige and Scarlet Lake:
"It's pictures inside we need to shed,
preferrably before it's time for bed.

"We dream all night while we're asleep
and wake up full, dreams high and deep!
If we don't get emptied throughout the day,
when more get added, they're in the way!

"After a while it's just too much ...
we ache, we hurt, and suffer such!
You took a break, we understood,
but too long a break does us no good!"

"I don't understand," I said, quite shocked,
"I draw everyday, I never stop!
Portraits, books, they take a while ...
Sorry you hurt, but they make me smile!!"

"We like those, too! Don't get us wrong!
But, just like when you hear old songs,
You think of others you'd like to hear,
So dreams come to us that we hold dear ...

"And they're pictures and colors that we'd like to see
recorded on paper ... please! Let it be!
Wonderful dreams, that will benefit others ...
Fathers and sons, sisters and mothers!"

"But I've got clients, and jobs to do!
I can't be drawing your dreams, too!
I have to work ... can't play around ...
no matter how your dreams abound!
You'll have to find another way
to relieve that pressure every day!"

They looked quite glum, but undeterred,
and I wasn't getting the final word ...
"Take a look at THESE!" they flatly said.
Towards those drawings, I turned my head.

It was the same stack I'd drawn all night,
the stack resulting from their plight.
Relunctantly I took a sheet ...
again my jaw dropped towards my feet!

Jaw Drop
I couldn't quite believe my eyes!
I took another ... again ... surprised!
A third ... a fourth! ... to be specific ...
These were great! Their dreams ... terrific!

So here's a dilema ... what could I do?
I could see their problem ... and my plight, too!
They needed relief ... and I had to work,
but these drawings simply could not be shirked ...

I thought for a moment, then said with a smile,
"I know exactly what we'll do with this pile!
We'll collect them all up and you'll all be celebs ...
We'll put 'em all up on the world wide web!"

So that's what we did, and here's where they are!
When you stop by for a visit, YOU'RE really the star!
You can learn how to draw, or print up a book;
lay out a cover; write stories that hook!

Get advice to find artists and editors, too!
And all kinds of printers and publishers who
will publish that book where you poured in your heart ...
that book, you're convinced, is a true work of art!

And if you just want some fun, there's plenty of that ...
there's monsters and ponies ... one sermon ... one cat!
So stop by real often to see what you'll see ...
and find out what we're up to ... my pencils and me!

WWW Pictures