X graphics

How can I make a very simple app (background a solid color, draw some
black text, that's it) in X? Heck, it can be in text mode as long as it
has a decent selection (2^6 or more) of colors. I know a bit of C and
C++, and a lot more bash.

I see xterm has a 256-color mode, but Ubuntu's apparently wasn't compiled
with it. How much of a PITA is xterm to compile from source?

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