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Spadina Literary Review  —  edition 2 page 07


Yet Art felt sad and hollow. "I've lost my raison d'être," she confided to Booze, a seedy lesser god who had become her amigo lately. "Money treats me like an objet. He doesn't even come round anymore — no time, he claims."

"You've still got me," Booze consoled her.

"I used to be great," Art snivelled. "Everything used to be simple. Where did that epoch go?" She knocked her easel over as she staggered out of the house. It was a summer morning. A saffron sun sizzled on the bronze horizon like an egg on a teflon pan. Art stepped off the curb and got flattened by a passing vehicle.

Fortunately the vehicle was an ambulance. And it was driven by Big G Himself, Chairman and Chief Paramedic of the Celestial Board.

"What am I?" Art asked when she came to. "Where do I come from? Where am I going?"

"You've learned a valuable lesson," Big G observed, like a dad rescuing his daughter from a wild party.

"I'm a failure," she sputtered. "Everybody here works for Money."

"It's all for the best," said Big G as the ambulance puttered into the sky and more or less evaporated as it slipped thru the Pearly Gates. A crowd of gods and goddesses gathered to welcome Art home.

"We were worried to death about you," Love gushed.

"Heaven is a desert without you," Reason affirmed.

Mother Nature chimed in with her typically homey advice. "Do watercolors, dear, they're therapeutic. You'll have your divinity back in no time."

So, in case you've been wondering, that's what Art is up to today. With boundless serenity (in Heaven, no pressure to produce) she dabs infinite gradations of hues — ivory on alabaster, mauve on plum — on sheets of cloud that she selflessly bestows upon the other deities.

"Gee, thanks," says War, expressing the general sentiment.

Money of course is absent from this largess. Ensnared in his manipulation of feeble-minded mortals, he has lost the path back to Heaven. Art, meanwhile, preferring to stay where she is appreciated, may never return to Earth.