Recently, I had the pleasure, and the honor, of reading and reviewing author Allison Green’s memoir, The Ghosts Who Travel With Me: A Literary Pilgrimage Through Brautigan’s America, for the Los Angeles Review of Books.
Green’s pilgrimage is a poignant and beautifully written story, told in short chapters, about the many ghosts in her life—family, ancestors, Idaho, her adolescent self, and especially, her relationship to Richard Brautigan (best known for his novel Trout Fishing in America), the hippie era author she adored as a teen and young adult. As a grown woman, however, returning to his work, she discovers something about Brautigan that causes her to reevaluate the origin of her admiration for him and the America about which he wrote. Grappling with her revelation, she sets out to trace Brautigan’s footsteps through Idaho (her ancestral home and setting of Trout), and the end result is this insightful, sensitive, humorous and poetic memoir.
Which comes highly recommended from me to you.
You can read the full review HERE.
And go buy Green’s book HERE!
Vincent van Gogh, sunflowers, Cumberland’s beloved Franklin Farm, and more.
An excerpt from my newly published essay, Devotion (you can read the entire piece online, page 12 at The Tishman Review):
[T]he sunflowers do tell a dyed-in-the-wool tale of the vagaries of time. The cycle of life. The land and the people. Sunflowers are at once beautiful and tragic: they are vivacious and bright, a bloating bloom of sustenance, a bee’s libation, a bird’s victual, and no sooner does the bee syphon its last bit of nectar from the crowded disc of florets than the sunflower sheds its last seed, curls inward and fades. Like farmers rolling hay in the field, they fold for the season.
Pleased as punch (sparkly and spiked) to announce that my essay, The Bad Wife, was recently published at PANK Magazine. A short excerpt: “The Husband lies prostrate on a gurney, his bladder drained by a jaundiced tube. A long, thin needle through which CO2 will surge is inserted into his belly button and his freshly shaved midsection soon inflates like molten glass to three times its ordinary mass. This is called insufflation of the peritoneal cavity. Black lines are drawn crisscross along the corporeal mass, preserving only a rectangular swath of skin bordering the umbilicus—an emerging grid plan that looks like Midtown Manhattan, Central Park at its core. The flesh below the Husband’s belly button is punctured several times with sharp-tipped hollow trocars that are drilled by hand through layers of epidermis and fat, like an auger through ice, carving out five clammy burrows…” Read more here at PANK.