Monday, July 23, 2012

Aimless Reading: The S's, Part 38.1 (Gary Snyder)

Rirprap and Cold Mountain Poems
Snyder, Gary
Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems

This book came from the estate of Russell Pawlak. I have written about this acquisition before (scroll down a bit).

I only met him once, at one of the first season's Babel events. He came up to apologize for an incident that had occurred during Orhan Pamuk's visit, which you can read about here.

Since Russell had been in charge of the Central Terminal restoration effort, he felt responsible for what had happened between Orhan and the watchman. As a lover of literature, I think he felt doubly bad. He offered to bring any future authors on a personal tour of the station.

I think he died soon after that. I really knew nothing about him. After he passed, a memorial fund to benefit Just Buffalo was set up in his name and several people made donations.

Many of the books that I took from his library are gone. I gave one to a friend. The dog ate four or five of them one day. I still have this and another by Snyder and a few more.

from Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems

Mid-August at Sourdough Mountain Lookout

Down valley a smoke haze
Three days heat, after five days rain
Pitch glows on the fir-cones
Across rocks and meadows
Swarms of new flies.

I cannot remember things I once read
A few friends, but they are in cities.
Drinking cold snow-water from a tin cup
Looking down for miles
Through high still air.

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