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Friends –

This is a small painting – roughly 5x7" before matting and framing, which so far it has not been sold, and signifies a small tribute to these little burros.

Bob and I have spent some time down in the Navajo Nation of San Juan County this spring. A lot of it has been work, but so much has been pleasure. The pleasure comes to us in the distance-meeting with friends and the beauty of the landscape as we drive through the canyons and mesas which showcase enormous rock forms.

One joy that we had always anticipated was the sight of a small pack of cute burros and several paint ponies which belong to the Navajo in nearby White Rock. They roam the high desert mesa near the San Juan River and it is hard to tell if the ponies rule the roost, or if the burros call the shots. Either way, they seem wild in their domestication and cautious but trusting of me when we pull over to satisfy our pleasure and get a better look. I find the sight of them to be every bit as breathtaking as any viewpoint along the Grand Canyon.

On our trip this last week to deliver boxes of supplies we were crushed by what we saw. In an apparent act of hateful terrorism, someone(s) had chosen to shoot five of these sweet burros and we saw their bloated carcasses as we headed down the road. No doubt that they were coaxed closer to the fence by forces of hate -- people taking advantage of their trust. By deceiving these sweet creatures they wanted…. What? In the end, their only crime was 'Trust' – deserving of love and not bullets.

Such is the troubled world we live in. At the very least I need to pay tribute to them with this little painting and their story.