A PLACE CALLED GHOST RANCH
Georgia O’Keefe, inscrutable, enigmatic
as some long-neglected goddess,
stares at me, unblinking, from a book shelf,
perched there like a hunting owl.
Were I a mouse, scurrying
across the desert floor in moonlight,
I’d let her kill me if she had to
for the sake of art,
but only on the condition
she lay a cactus flower
beside my still-warm body,
before she begins painting
the skeleton she see inside me.
There is no questioning the motives
of gods, owls or artists, yet
I entreat the goddess,
as a last request,
to allow the artist to paint the sky
amethyst and indigo,
allow the owl to relentlessly ask its question,
though the answer has become irrelevant
to all but some curious poet,
not as alone as he presumed, in a library,
populated, at midnight, only by sleeping authors
on retreat at a place called Ghost Ranch.
Bio.: I woke up breathing again this morning. I intend to keep breathing all day. Check out my new website at http://www.larryschugpoet.com
You’ve “killed” me for art’s sake with this poem, Larry. Really enjoyed this!
Larry Schug, I am now a fan and want to read more of your work. You pretty much had me at “Untitled,” even though I normally hate untitled works. But I love how you’re equally at home at a hardware store or art museum. Now I’m heading off to visit your website.
I love this poem so much that I ordered one of your books. (I love Minnesota too but couldn’t stay there.)
Thank you so much, Lucia. I hope you enjoy the book.
Thanks for this trip of a poem, Larry. It moves. Going to check out your website.
I’ve been to Ghost Ranch and enjoyed O’Keefe’s work for years. You’ve captured the essence of both. It would indeed be tempting to be that mouse.
Glad you plan to keep breathing. I know that sense of being isolated reasonably well, so this is just a thought . . . the ending (the Ghost Ranch/library) seems a little overfilled, since we already have Ghost Ranch up front.
Love the poem. It’s a one of a kind!