Monday, March 28, 2016

death is unavoidable and yet still there are persons, artists of life, we think will live forever

thus it was jim harrison for me

i was on a low media diet this past weekend a whole lot of inner stress brought on by my own stupidity and carelessness was at the forefront of my mind so when i did log on to the net it was only to answer and write a few emails and watch a bit of youtube

so when i opened the paper and saw the obit for jim harrison i was shocked  i shouldn't have been the poet/novelist was in his late 70s he smoked like a chimney and drank like verlaine

and yet he was this writer who lived life in stereo he ate life it is evident in everything he wrote

i am a great admirer of all of his writing when anna and i were dating she gave me harrison's collected non-fiction, just before dark, as a birthday present i carried that book everywhere at school at work i wore the book out of its binding

jim harrison was a poet first and foremost and when we are young we seek those writers who have traced a life most suitable for our own designs i wrote to jim harrison in 1994 a fan letter i was an undergrad idiot poet who spent more time in the stacks at the library then in my classes i read everything i could get my hands on a habit that has not abated

to my surprise harrison wrote back a short handwritten letter i have it beside me right now in 1994 i was 27 and didn't know anyone who loved poetry as i did i felt alone by writing to harrison i was attempting what all young writers deserve validation of our vocation/obsession in a community of souls where words mean life

we don't live forever even our words won't live forever but while we live we can read write love teach and preserve the necessities of creation jim harrison was a large man with huge appetite when i read him i want to get drunk sit zazen take a long walk hug my loves particularly anna and nick eat a good meal and write poems until i can no longer speak for the end shall only be death


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