Monday, April 27, 2009


This is Big Sur, California Big Sur - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. It's one of my favorite places on earth. You can see why. I spent a good deal of time here, camping and having fun back in the early 70s.

This is Richard Brautigan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia who happened to be my favorite author at the time I was playing in Big Sur. Richard was well known then as a "Beat" type poet and an author of novels. A Confederate General From Big Sur (1964, ISBN 0-224-61923-3) was my favorite of his books. Here you can find a list of his novels Richard Brautigan: Novels—Introduction and a blip about their content. Here you can find his poetry Poet: Richard Brautigan - All poems of Richard Brautigan

Today I have to go to the town to the left and do my Monday meeting thing again. But my head will be in Big Sur. It's featured in The Smithsonian Magazine this month, if you read it. The article talks about my Big Sur and it's unique ambience and the people, famous and not who are connected with it. A good read.

Here are a couple of Brautigan poems. I once laid on the very edge of one of those cliffs up there in the top photograph, drinking Strawberry Hill wine, as my friend and I dangeled our idiot's legs off the end of the cliff and took turns reading Brautigan's poems. There was a good deal of laughing involved too. :-) He was an interesting fellow, our Richard. Parody, satire, black humor and Zen.
As it turns out, Richard had a long battle with mental illness and took his own life the
age of 49 back in 1984. I think it was a tragic loss. Here, where this tiny lettering and heart are... is a poem that I find particularly relavant to my life currently. I should have known that Richard Brautigan would have had the right words. As it turns out, you can't enlarge it so here it is:
Love Poem
It's so nice
to wake up in the morning
all alone.
and not to have to tell somebody
you love them
when you don't love them
Hope your evening has something warm and sentimental.


  1. i will have to check his poetry.

    big sur is a gorgeous place. i had the best nights sleep of my life there by the side of the road, on top of a cliff, on a bed of pine needles, drifting off to sleep to the sound of the ocean.

  2. Lime--There is something about that ocean air. It is an unbelievable place. I'm so glad you got to share in that. Everone should go there at least once in their life.

  3. Thanks to you, I have added Big Sur to my list of places to visit.

    And thanks to you, I have added Brautigan to my list of authors to read.

    It seems like so many of these gifted writers fight personal demons. The author of "Infinite Jest", one of my favorite books, hanged himself last September at age 46.

    David Foster Wallace

  4. Cube--Thanks for the link and a new author.
    I think sometimes people are writers for the same reason that some folk over-drink. Sort of a self-medication... a therapudic way expressing those demons and fears and the hope that someone else will understand.

  5. Very informative. It's one place I'd hardly ever heard of, and the only idea of location I had before was "probably California".

  6. dmarks-- It's a great place that anyone would fall in love with. That twisting highway in the Hitchcock movie The Birds...That drive from Monterey to San Francisco goes right through Big Sur. I hope you are lucky enough to visit it someday.

  7. We used to spend some time in the Big Sur area when I was a kid.

  8. Citizen-- Oh good others who have been there. It seems a shame to have it unnoticed. But then I suppose if too many notice, it will not stay nice.

  9. All-- Wow. I expected someone else to go hey... I used to read Braughtigan! Cool beans.

    I don't know how timely his novels would be now, but I'd reread them. They were different. But so is Vonnegut, or John Irving and that's why I love them. If we were all the same it would be a crap world. I want the roller coaster, not a walk through the park. I want surprise and to suddenly have to gasp for breath and maybe even have a good hard cry. :-)

  10. I've never been to Big Sur. I've always wanted to go, though. I have read a bunch of Braughtigan. I read a lot of his stuff when I lived in a little town called Leggett, Ca. On the border between Mendocino and Humboldt Counties.

  11. Churlita-- Humbolt and Mendocino ("Mendocino, Mendocino...where life's such a gas... it'll blow your mind in a moment" -- Sir Douglas Quintet). California is full of beauty isn't it? Both very lovely places. Humbolt "the pot capitol of the world" is what they used to call it. Ha. I almost went to college there but I met a guy who gave me a bad case of stupid.
    I'm so glad someone else recalls Braughtigan! I should have known it would be you.