Keith Kanger 1951-2010
Last March the Sixteenth was the birthday of my late friend Keith.
Not a day passes that he is not at my side or looking over my shoulder when I am writing or listening to Our Music, as the title of one of his favourite albums by Ornate Coleman.
The Reader Over My Shoulder is the title of a Handbook For Writers by Robert Graves that was part of our canon.
I like to dedicate the homonym poem by Graves to him.
The Reader Over My Shoulder
You, reading over my shoulder, peering beneath
My writing arm -- I suddenly feel your breath
Hot on my hand or on my nape,
So interrupt my theme, scratching these few
Words on the margin for you, namely you,
Too-human shape fixed in that shape: --
All the saying of things against myself
And for myself I have well done myself.
What now, old enemy, shall you do
But quote and underline, thrusting yourself
Against me, as ambassador of myself,
In damned confusion of myself and you?
For you in strutting, you in sycophancy,
Have played too long this other self of me,
Doubling the part of judge and patron
With that of creaking grind-stone to my wit,
Know me, have done: I am a proud spirit
And you for ever clay. Have done.
Jan-Pieter Guépin 25 April 1929 - 21 February 2006
Ten years ago died on this cold February Day the great scholar and writer Jan-Pieter Guépin.
Underrated he all the same left a huge & important oeuvre on Neo-Latin in the Netherlands (Janus Secundus), rhetorics and general philosophical things.
This man was brilliant in a sense I seldom have riscontred in other persons, the new ideas spilling over out of his ears.
We made many road trips towards the South together, in this Morgan.