Dream. Tiles crawl
up the gallery wall. Conceptual
cowgirl art. Jenny Holzer or Barbara Kruger
painted each square-footer, splatted fine texture
of layered letters. Twin duty: each tile's a pixel
of a fly-eye mosaic, faceting a dusty cattle
ranch she lived on. Gaunt flank
and bone corral.
form the sky. The ranch is high
desert--a mile up or more, for the hazy hor-
izon's pale, but zenith's azure sky:
near-alpine air. Austere.
in lobby with a survey. Pens. "Help steer
my next project." Deep questions; answers sting.
But she ignores truths begged-for--demands a large
registration fee! I'm mad. She never said. Solicited
a soul-search just for cash? I feel marketed:
And yet her last quest
mattered. She lived three years in a ghost
town. Gnawed-out tortoise-shells of homes,
hollow store-skulls at a desert junction.
Orphans settled there
like loess. Dysfunction.
Half the town drugged. Two murders. Then
the slow fact that an Artist--capital--documented all,
scribing outcast dreams patiently, indelibly,
saw them through sere to green:
Struggle. Get clean.
Make a house a home. Start a co-op store.
By the time she left town, it was one. Poor
but living. Green
I think from being
seen. Art's power: see the seen
as worth being seen.