Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Colonel

Or is he The Kernel? Perhaps reflecting yet another opportunity for me to completely misunderstand The Big Picture.

Despite a preference for cammouflage fashion, this gentleman "farmer" is hardly the stuff of military bearing. Gentle and humble, I don't think I've heard him utter more than a few words each time we've met over the years.Excruciatingly polite. Though he does strike me as someone who could easily conduct guerrilla-style warfare if push came to shove.

He is typically not at home when we come a callin'. If anyone is in the one-room board house, they often nod up to the dense grove of palms, mango trees, avocado, and overall dense tangle of foliage, saying. "he gone a bush."

Much "hailing up" in that direction typically results in a call-and-response barrage of patois. We hear him long before we see him. Finally, the Colonel emerges from the thick greenery and descends goat-like down the last few rocky steps of the steep hillside behind his house.

A true country man of the 21st century, the Colonel wears a tattered marina slung low over his knee-length cargo shorts, casually steps barefoot over the sharp rock-stone, carrying a machete in one hand and talking into his cell phone with the other.

The Big Picture, indeed.

4"x6" ink and watercolor on paper.
Purchase a print of this painting here.

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