"Moonlit High Plains Gothic: Steve's Grasshopper"

by Michael Boss
Casein on Rag board
12" X 18"
From a Private Collection

My introduction to the big world of the oil patch came in the late 1950s. Our next door neighbors, Steve and Mary Hayes, originally came to Hill City, Kansas from Missouri in the late 1950s. Steve was a pumper for the Co-op Oil and Gas Company. Later they moved to a lease house in southwest Graham County.

My parents, Lois and Warren, and the Hayes', loved to hunt, fish and play canasta. In between these events, Steve would occasionally take me along when he started or checked on the pumping units. At their lease house, I particularly remember the big sky nights on the plains and the pop-pop-POP of the engines around the lease. That led to my thoughts on the painting. Magnificent isolation.

Thank you, Steve and Mary.

Steve and Mike