Often, the ambiguous lines of abstract art seem impenetrable, cold, unwelcoming—as if to say: “I am not for you.” To be intimated by art is not an uncommon experience, and this alienation is only strengthened by the select few who claim to be “insiders,” the true readers of art. However, this week, Badgerdog writer Aubrey refused to be kept out. She not only visited the Blanton Museum of Art (and Kazuya Sakai’s painting), she made it her home. The result of her daring journey is this poem, which rejects the idea that art has any single meaning. Aubrey enters Sakai’s canvas, becoming three distinct speakers as she walks along the painting’s lines. Here is the sea. Here is the rainbow. Here is the world. And here is a possible traveler. She is speaking.
Girls of Kilimanjaro
—inspired by Kazuya Sakai’s Filles de Kilimanjaro III
I am a twisting path of rainbows going anywhere I please, with little stops along the way.
I am a girl of Kilimanjaro traveling from Asia to Europe to Mexico on a path of rainbow light.
I am the sea of green around the path. I will never let her pass.
Aubrey, sixth grade, Badgerdog Creative Writing Summer Camp at the Girls’ School of Austin