I received an e-mail
from the poet Beverly Dahlen that
"I am in shock, really. I saw Bill in Seattle a month ago at a reading
I gave there. He seemed in good health at the time."
William Witherup was dead, and
with him the spirit
of the era that Environmental Artist Richard Long called “that radical
re-think of everything,” became even wispier.
and Kore pulled Bill down to the golden core of
her nipples, as he had described those of his beloved Marian, whose raven
hair, had "spread out like black moss against the rock," at
the Zen Mountain Monastery, Tassajara Springs, CA.
Fifteen years later, in Albuquerque,
I ran into a friend who was attending Medical School there. He said that
the woman with whom he was involved knew me. It was Marian.
She had moved to New Mexico and her name was Chama,
after the river that winds its way past Christ in the Desert Monastery,
is not that the land is simply beautiful but that it is powerful. Its
power derives from the tension between its obvious beauty and its capacity
to take life. Its power flows into the mind from a realization of how
Thomas Merton visited the last year
of his life. Then he told me that Chama was dying.
The veins in your
hand are the veins of a leaf
that is slowly changing to coal.
Someday your hand
will heat the roots of mountain flowers.
fell asleep thinking about old friends who had passed away. Shortly
before dawn, Robert Creeley appeared. "Bob," I said,
"I heard you're dead. It’s good to see you’re alive!"
"Me too," he grinned through the iconic lens of his singlular