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Oil and Clay on Canvas

For years I have been fascinated by the crown grown from the skull of bighorn sheep. While in college I wrote a poem about an

encounter with these cliffside kings. Here is a portion of that poem:

One morning I resolved to visit a king.

Donning the trappings of a pauper I departed undaunted.

Ambling down the road and cutting from the beaten path

I pushed through a thicket,

thorns snagging at my skin.

I saw jagged peaks and followed them,

approaching the feet of a tremendous mountain.

Gazing up to the cliffs ragged shorn faces

I found his fortress and looked in wonder and awe.

Off in the distance I saw in silhouette

A nimble group eating along the cliff’s edge.

And there he was in the midst of the rugged band

Glorious and battle worn,

With eyes that burned like amber.

His crown was not made of gilded gold

But had curled from his own skull.

It showed years of brutal use

As a weapon to bludgeon,

never an ornate decoration.

His coat was tattered and falling apart.

The wind pulled his own hair from him

But he wore his robe as if nothing in the world were finer.

Undaunted by the drop he continued on.

He looked at me for only a moment

Curious at my presence in his domain.

I could tell I was unwelcome and uninvited,

As he analyzed my every move with attention.

I returned home having seen a marvel

Wild and unruled except by the laws that are natural.

Now in memory I reminisce

In the morning I resolved to visit a king.