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May 31 For such a long damn month it sure has gone by quickly...
but at least I got something done under the Russian Olive tree...

May 30
Today will be doing boxes to ship off stuff Ruth sold in the shop. If I get through with that then perhaps I will get back to building my  tree house Jungle gym also known as the Baby Soak Bar (and Grill) for whatever that is supposed to be.

Occasionally I wonder what I am doing with my life, and then I remember I am retired and most of what I have to do, is done and the other stuff is either not important or it is certainly behind me...

As for getting on with my famous trilogy, I confess there is little motivation to continue a saga that does not seem to know where it is going.

May 29
Had a very nice evening with old buddies from ABQ, lots of food, beer, and talk.

And to get ahead of the game about being a grandpa, I continue to work on the tree-table next to the hot tub, with the idea that I will put a big sand bed around it so the little new generation can tumble off the tree with not too much concern...heh? ...but we will see...

May 28
When I was doing the mural in Paulina, Oregon, A writer named "Bing" Bingham interviewed me for a syndicated online agricultural program. Here is what he wrote:


By Bing Bingham

Some people change their lives in bits and pieces. Others do it when a horse is trying to stomp out their liver.

Ken remembers when he realized there was something special about a pencil.

"I was about 4 years old," he said, "when my cousin would work on her drawings at our house."

He was fascinated and sat for hours watching her sketch horses.

"It was the first time I realized there was a magic line on the end of pencil," he says, "and you could do anything with it."

Ken was nearing his teens when began getting in trouble. His buddies who were showing him the ways of the streets. By 11, he was in danger of becoming a delinquent.

His parents sent him to his cowboy brother working on the edge of nowhere in the Oregon high desert. He took to cowboy life like a range horse to running.

His summers were filled with long, hard days. The winters were a time when only the strongest and toughest livestock survived. Ken thrived, lean as Juniper snag and as tough as a chunk of Mountain Mahogany. He was a desert cowboy.

As a young man, he adopted a five-year-old Palomino stud, named Wasco, from the Warm Springs Indian Reservation. After gelding, he began training the horse.

"We got along great," he said, "he was gentle as could be."

That summer Ken was called away to the hayfields of Burns. It was a summer of eating, sleeping and work—16 hour days, 6-7 days a week. His time for relaxation was measured in minutes and stolen catnaps.

That fall, after receiving his final paycheck, he headed home. He wanted to see his horse and continue his training.

To this day, five decades later, Ken still isn't sure what changed Wasco.

He grabbed his saddle and bridle, then headed to the corrals. Wasco stood quietly during the process. When the cinch was tight, Ken climbed on his horse.

As Ken's right foot lifted off the ground, so did Wasco. The horse bucked as hard as any horse could. Ken fought to stay in the saddle, but lost the battle—seven separate times.

On the seventh and final time, as Ken was lofting through the air, "I was still determined I might get back on the horse one more time."

Ken landed flat on his back in the corral and Wasco stepped square in his chest

"I was terrified when I got off the ground, my legs were shaking one end to the other," Ken says, "I couldn't get near that horse."

Wasco was frightened and mad too. He was prancing, snorting and blowing snot in all directions. He looked at Ken as if to say, "OK big boy, if you think that hurt, try it again...."

"I think when that horse stepped on me, he must have pushed some brains into my head," Ken said, "I knew I was going to become an artist and would never be a cowboy again."

Ken limped out of the corral and never went back.

For forty-five years, Ken Wolverton made a living as an artist. He's done over two hundred murals around the world and lived in places most people only dream about.

"I guess getting bucked off did something to me," he says, "I haven't drawn a western scene since I was a teenager."

This year, Ken Wolverton helped the kids from Paulina School do a western mural on the front of their building. However, if a person traveling through looks carefully, in one corner there's a cowboy riding a pretty Palomino—the horse is bucking.

This is the story of a horse that helped turn a cowboy into an artist.

Bing Bingham is a writer, rancher and storyteller. If you have a story to pass along contact him at

May 27

The last two days with the help  from a few friends we painted
the first wall on the bridge foundations on my property. This one is
22 feet high and 28 feet across...
the theme being Cowboy Za Zen Kama Sutra

...hey its on my land so I can do what I want, yes?

But there is a bigger heart story for me and that is once again I have painted
a horse that changed my life. The golden palomino is Wasco, who I loved
as much as anyone can ever love a horse. Because of him I was going to be a
cowboy up until I was 18. But also because of him I decided to change my
career plan and become an artist...after he bucked me off seven times in a
row one brother eventually sold him to a rodeo producer where
Wasco was employed to buck off professional riders. I always felt bad about that
and so in Oregon I painted myself riding Wasco in his best bucking style, and
here on my property, Wasco and I are reunited to ride off in the blissful
moonlight with our dreams of happy-for-ever-after.

May 24 The Baby Soak Wet Bar is in process...but as of yet I have no idea what I am doing other than playing with wood and thinking someday Rowans little one may be crawling around it somewhere. So, really it is about me having a comfortable lounge to sit and watch the progress of another generation...and at the same time I am using up a few pieces of wood that have been waiting for years to be put in a sacred space.

May 21
We saw Stevie Nicks in concert last night at Sandia. I am not a big

fan of hers, but the concert was great.
...and on the other side of the Universe, it's  me in the garden...

this is the tree table which is coming along so so...

...and strange stuff out in the studio...

...uh, here we have the Baby Soak Bar Sock Hop dancers...

...and these guys are the Sock Hop Band...

May 20,
I started cleaning the yard up yesterday and in the process I rediscovered a small area under the Russian Olive trees that I always thought was a good place to hang out in the summer...anyway, as I carried on cutting out the new growth of lower branches, it  occurred to me what a great place it would be for a baby to  hang out, and learn aspects of Mother with that notion implanted, I began a project of which I am not sure of how it will look, but somewhere like a crib in a Japanese gardener/Californian wood butcherer style garden would be close...

Oh, by the way my daughter Rowan is expecting her first baby in about a month. Technically that will make me a grandfather for the first time.

This is just the beginning...

so not much yet to see..

...except if you look close for a tree frog...

Meanwhile back to the silly horse competition...

May 19
t is a slow spring which is getting not only to me, but most of the other inmates of this valley. But what can ya' do?

I continue to "putter"  around in the studio, mostly with little idea of what I am doing. Saragossa Straights syndrome.

An old High School bud showed up, for a quick visit, and we ran over over 48 years in a couple hours...I wish everyone I have known was more near so we could keep tabs at a closer interval.

I begun to realize after Oregon, that for the most part I don't actually relate to most people I know here in this eclectic crack in the earth of New Mexico, meaning all I really do is make noise in their direction indicating my mind is not gone yet...most likely that is the result of being an eccentric old fart which comes in natural doses after years of being an eccentric
weirdo from age three...

May 18
Everyday I think about what I should have done, some other place, some other time, but everyday what I get around to is doing what I can.

Another horse of sorts...
May 17
I keep putting cuts of ALL IS FAIR IN LOVE AND PARKING METERS on the bottom of this page, but I am having issues with the web program which does not want to give me the same font, among other problems...however, there it is down there if you are inclined...

As for other things, here is the horse thingmebob I worked on the other day.

I have so much cut-up pieces of what-not lying around the studio, that some times it is compelling to use what is.

May 16

very time I see a picture of myself these days I can't help but think, "Wow what an old goat you are." Well, I guess it had to happen sometime...anyway my good looking friends still let me give a hug and smooch occasionally.

Ruth and I went to a gallery opening and the next night we hung out in the hot tub while the moon glowed above us, so life is not so ad even if I look like Gabby Hayes...

And on another subject, one of our buddies recently got himself in a complication and he now is in the process of extracting out of the said situation...the long story short is I am going to organize a little "paint-in" on one of the bridge foundations on our property, which at the moment is May 25th from 12 noon onwards to any of you who may be nearby and wish to participate...anyway is initial design measuring in real scale approximately 15 X 25 feet.

MAY 15
The weather is FINALLY getting spring like...but after the experience of wind, water, and just plain old nasty cold stuff I am not taking it for granted yet. All I can say is halleluiah the heat when it comes.

I'm in the process of making another horse sculpture, but not really sure why other than the wood I came across said "horse."

May 14
Survived another Friday the 13th despite my best attempt at self implosion...ah well, some of us get away with murder...

On the brighter side of this life experiment, I am slowly getting the studio back in order after the chaos of two projects leaving material scattered just before my little excursion to Oregon...

After all of the paint I am feeling the need to get back to wood stuff.

In the aftermath of Oregon, my memory is sifting through all of what occurred there and how deeply my world is motivated by the person I became from those early years on the ranch, but how more profoundly I changed after I went out into the world to discover who I am...that naturally is still a work in progress.

I may start a side bar soon with what is left of my literary ambition, but for the moment thinking about where to do this and at what junction to inaugurate a self-publication??? I continue to think of my friend Linda Chase and wish I had said more than I did, about writing, about living, about dying about who we were and how long we traveled paths in company...

May 11 okay I know I said I was going to stop this incessant internal drumming of what is happening in my little world, and one of the reasons was that I might start writing in my journal again...well, the result has been I have inscribed one paragraph of I don't even know I am back again and shall pick up the pace tomorrow.

May 12
One thing important to me is I am glad I did the project out in Oregon, back where I grew up as a young man, but I sure am glad to be home.

Last night however I had as they say, "Tee many Martoonis" and I am glad that sacrificial slaughter of brain cells is over, being the ritual really never does me or Ruth any good, but one good thing did come out of it or at least it seemed so last that maybe at last I have a clue to finishing the trilogy I have been working on since 1985...I will see, but just as an exercise  I may continue the story on line at some point.

The ideas always seem more brilliant the night before.

..and something that has not left my mind... has been the death of a very good friend I have known since 1974, Linda Chase Broda...She was a good buddy so it is a loss for many people.

The Paulina "Buckaroo"mural


Picture of our tour to Oregon...

Portland for two days

Mt. Hood for an afternoon....and
just a split second after took the photo of Ruth in
the door way, I stepped
forward forgetting a bench was just in front and
promptly falling flat on my face and sent the old
digital on another death-defying splatter...all
for sake of Ruth visiting the movie-set of

Redmond and Bend
for another 2 days, of which was more than
depressing for the fact that beautiful little Bend
has gone the way of BIG-BOOM BANANAS.

Prineville for another afternoon..

And then my brother Tommy and sister-in-law
Beverly's ranch

and the story of doing a five panel mural each panel
approximately  12 X  10 foot mural
painted by 39 kids K-8 in 5 working days...

The completed 5 day mural with 40 kids K-8 in the ranch community of Paulina, Oregon.

..and just to finally get even, I put myself back on Wasco, my old palomino
who bucked me off 7 times in a row one day and that changed my life forever...

Details of the school mural

The Harlequin Moon Trilogy

By Kenneth James Wolverton © copyright, January 1, 2003         

interested in reading the trilogy email me