painting happiness

your best friend
is your latch key
you make dinner
for your sister
reheated manicotti
and instant mashed potatoes
your mother is abed
her boyfriend
drinks vodka
from plastic water bottles
you wash the dishes
while bob ross
across the room
“it’s so important
to do something every day
that will make you
you try to read
your sister sketches
you wonder if
bob ross
could paint happiness
for an 11-year-old
if you asked nicely

Melissa Boles is a writer, storyteller, and impatient optimist from the Pacific Northwest who believes art can heal all things. Melissa launched The Story Art Tells in May 2020, and has recently been published in Emerge Literary Journal and Sexology. You can find more of her writing at and follow her on social media at @melloftheball.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *