|Gerry Gilbert & Sanguinaria canadensis|
Until sometime in 1985 I was not a fan of poetry. In high school in Austin I would have gotten extra points if I could memorize a poem. I could not. That launched my dislike of poetry.
In 1985 my friend Ian Bateson dragged me to a poetry reading at the Italian Cultural Institute that featured Allen Ginsburg and his then partner Peter Orlovsky. I was not turned on by Ginsburg and hated his concertina playing. Orlovsky read angry poems about Vietnam. I did not connect.
Then a man came on the stage and read eclectically his eclectic poems and I was hooked for life. It was Gerry Gilbert. We then became friends.
Sorting through stuff in my garage attic I found a black binder with neatly typed 159 pages. It has a title, Perhaps and they are Gilbert’s poems. He gave me this and on the last page he signed his name.
I could not but marvel at the fact that one of the little chapters in the beginning is all about cats.
This has been a week of extraordinary happenings. A couple of days ago I received a long and beautifully written email from a paramour of my Rosemary. She was hermetic and we never knew about her past love life. Interesting in the email is the fact the gentleman came to Vancouver when we were living in Kerrisdale and fruitlessly drove around the block hoping to find Rosemary in the garden. He did not dare ring the bell.
And so it is that my past is coming back with wonderful memories.