Pioneer Memories – Magpie Pair
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24” x 36”, acrylic, 1981
In the Nineteenth Century, the pioneers moved across the country setting up farms and settlements. They brought with them ideas of gentility from the more civilized Europe. I find it very poignant to come across a lilac or a tangled rosebush in the wild. It often indicates a long forgotten garden near a completely decayed house.

Here we have a little one-grave pioneer cemetery. The marker is gone; the name is forgotten. But still standing is the picket fence with its fancy pattern and elaborate corner posts. No one now visits the grave with bunches of flowers and wreaths. Nature has taken over with its organic decoration of native flowers and sagebrush. But even these seem to be appropriate like some Victorian dried garlands. The only visitors are the magpie pair who, in their black and white garb and with their intelligent ingenuity, seem to me to represent the spirit of the pioneers.