Sunday, March 27, 2011

Montana Inventory ...

I had a conversation with a friend recently, in which she confessed to me that she'd never heard of Richard Brautigan. I was thoroughly appalled by the revelation ... but of course Brautigan was a product of the 60s and 70s, and my friend is of a different generation. Brautigan just isn't going to be a timeless author, I'm afraid.

But his work is still a lot of fun, and since he lived in the Paradise Valley for a time he's worth another mention here. Unlike most Montana authors, though, there are surprisingly few mentions of the state in Brautigan's work. Here's one that I was able to find, an odd little poem called "Montana Inventory." It's from his 1976 collection, Loading Mercury with a Pitchfork.
At 85 miles an hour an insect splattered
like saffron on the windshield
and a white cloud in blue sky above the
      speed-curried bug

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