Harvey Dunn’s “The Prairie Is My Garden”

April 2, 2012
Standing in the right foreground of a prairie stands a mother. She wears a crimson skirt and ashen colored blouse with a linen apron flapping the wind. Her tall, slender frame has a tan complexion, presenting an impression of a woman who endured hard labor. Wisps of brown hair appear to blow around her temples. In her left hand she holds scissors, and in her right she holds a bouquet of just-gathered wild flowers facing downwards.

Two children pose to the woman’s left next to a creek. Dressed in a white knee-length white frock, a girl stands behind her mother. Another child dressed in blue, with hair the color of the sun, bends over on the ground of the prairie for more flowers. In his left hand, he holds up wildflowers. To the left of the second child flows a creek. Clear water reflects the bank and grasses above it.

In the background of the prairie scene, three small, plain buildings rest comfortably. They have clay-colored roofs and grey siding. Out of one building sticks out a brick chimney with no smoke floating out. Only one or two windows appear visible on the homestead. Behind the buildings looms a vast sky. Light, puffy clouds float in the sky.

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