The Artist



Tame mind side, like farmer’s

field, is disciplined and cultivated

to produce a desired yield, useful


but limited. Wild mind is larger

deeper: planets, sun, mountains,

forests, flora, ocean waves,


gods, ancient creatures, collective

memory, rain, myths, folktales;

tricksters patrol – coyote, raven

tripmaster monkey.


Wander wild mind under

dark matter sky, cry for

vision.            Discover mirror


reflects actual form reveals

truth. Embrace compassion,

know, feel folks pain, delight.


Seize brush, paint vermillion

truth, ochre delight, turquoise

pain, sienna creatures, weave


wild braid, sacred and profane.


       –   Cam Cunningham 4/07

About Cam

Born in Detroit, 1939, Five Star Paper Trooper during WWII; raised up in Lubbock, Texas. Played football; no poetry or painting. First car, ’50 Ford, ’53 Mercury engine, lowered with glass packs. Saved by rhythm and blues, Big Joe Turner, the Crows, Chuck, Little Richard, Fats and Bo.

Buddy Holly was a year ahead in high school; danced to the Crickets at the roller rink; Crickett’s drummer, Jerry I. Allison’s girlfriend, Peggy Sue, a year behind. Eagle Scout, Outstanding Young Citizen (OYC) in ’55, frequenter of local bootleggers.

Texas Tech, economics major. Radicalized in the U.S. Army by friends, C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite, Mao Zedong, Ta, Ta, Tan, Tan (run, run, fight, fight).

After law school, LSD, mushrooms and mescalito, left the OYC plaque in a tree at the West Texas Freak Festival in Austin.

Spiritual Grapes of Wrath, Texas-California trek, studied and taught meditation, Tarot, breathwork, Enneagram, experienced Vision Fasts and Huichol Shamanism.

People’s lawyer for 40 years – on the Navajo Rez, in an Austin law commune (defended CO’s, dopers, draft dodgers and political activists); East Palo Alto, taught at New College of California Law School in San Francisco; (Marxist perspective, Karl and Groucho), and for the last 20 years, successfully represented workers with harassment, discrimination and wage claims.

Many years ago, Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, opened the doorway, plunged into poetry and painting – birds, whimsy, shamanism. Often paint outside on a hilltop near Sebastopol, California, use images from meditation, intuition, journeys and nature. Scarlet, cobalt, ochre, and orange images of the profane and sacred twirl together in humor and play.

Like poets Mary Oliver, Gary Snyder, Bob Dylan, Seamus Heaney, Billy Collins, and have published some work.

Live outside Sebastopol, CA, and on land near Pt. Arena, with Sylvia Marie for twenty seven years. Feed seven cats, tend a large organic garden. Bicycle trips to San Juan Islands, Maine, France, Canada, Denmark. Ran SF Marathon, NYC Marathon, and Catalina Island Marathon.


**Cam’s physical life left the planet in 2012. His presence remains through the bold energies that express through his paintings.