…for tomorrow we die. WP Blogger Michelle W. says ~ Tell about your last dinner — the food, the dining companions, the setting, the conversation.
La Posada is the last great Fred Harvey hotel and the masterpiece of architect Mary Colter. It’s an 80,000-square-foot Spanish hacienda in the small desert town of Winslow, Arizona. Just one of the reasons I fell in love with this little whistle-stop. It’s such a fine sight to see.
The hotel is also the home/studio of artist Tina Mion. Her laceratingly beautiful paintings cover the walls. At La Posada, she completed this 18-foot triptych, her take on a last dinner ~ A New Year’s Party in Purgatory for Suicides.
Take a close look.
In the summer of 2003, Mion began to paint, and the guests arrived, all of them suicides except for Liberace. She says, ” As the festivities got underway, I ran about nightly like a frazzled hostess until I finally threw up my hands and let people seat themselves. Some guests were no-shows and others arrived unexpectedly. The party took on a life of its own. No longer the master of ceremonies, I took a seat among the revelers — that’s me blowing a noisemaker.”
Art inspires. And Mion’s art at La Posada put my atoms in orbit.
Here’s my guest list for A Divine Last Supper ~
I sit with Marvin Gay on Georgia O’Keefe’s porch in Abiquiu.
We listen to Billy Collins recite his poem,
reminding us that life is a loaded gun.
Ted Hughes wears a precarious smile,
a bossy wind ruffles Sylvia’s hair.
Billy Joel riffs behind the black door.
Diana Ross scat sings with Lady Day,
tossing random syllables at bleached bones.
Georgia mixes adobe red and ocher for Frida
who paints herself in frontal pose,
a crown of thorns around her neck.
There’s a whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on in the courtyard
where the boys in the band are jammin’
where John Coltrane lays sheets of sound
where BB King lets Lucille do the talkin’
where Satchmo grins a rainbow of teeth
where Ringo kicks in the backbeat,
and Jerry Lee Lewis rakes his hands across the keys.
Later Pavarotti and Sting braid strains of the Angelicus,
send them off on the katabatic wind.
There are more poems from Billy,
Donald Hall and Mary Oliver,
Arthur Miller revises the script for All My Sons,
sips his nightcap cigarette.
A shower of meteors arrives like fan mail.
Faces tilted toward the moon,
we count stars over Chama Valley.
Julia Child brings out platters
of Champignons Farci and Salad Nicoise.
The Creator joins us at the long plank table
and we lift our glasses with Her
to honor the art written into our inheritance,
priceless leavings of the past.
I tell Her I know what Heaven is all about.
In the NYT section, By The Book, authors are always asked ~ If you could have dinner with any writer, dead or alive, who would it be?
Who would you invite to your last supper?