Night has fallen.

The Blue canvas originally had Clara Barton painted when I threw it in the corner. Months later, I started to repaint Clara, but she had become me. I’m crouching, holding paintbrushes. I had set out to paint the inside of Clara’s mind, but somewhere along the way my own memories butted in. The mummified cat at my feet was found many years ago under a house where I lived; the first dead person I saw was a torso. At the end of the war, Clara recounted a night when bodies were stretched out in an endless line on piles of straw and all she could think was what if the wax from her candle were to drip down and ignite them all? One identifier, a small figure in the background, holds a candle — the only flicker of hope in the painting. At my feet, another candle has ignited a letter to myself, listing the dates of the painting September 2001 to April 2002.

Clara Barton Tina Mion Cat Soldiers