Sunday, August 14, 2005

Dylan Morgan - From Author's Note to DRIVE: The First Quartet

I am not driven, so much, by intentions, as I am stunned into being by intent.

One starlit night in October I was sitting with my dear friend, Dylan Morgan. Dylan of the wide Texas mind. Dylan who first introduced me to Eduardo Galeano's Memoria de fuego. Dylan who read books and painted everyday. A friend of his had copied all of his paintings for the year, some 400 of them, and they were placing them in small binders. I looked through all of them, some I knew from the painting of them, some from their description or the set they belonged to: Kathe Kollwitz, Tamayo, contemporary photo-docs, . . . I stopped at a small painting of a man playing the violin seated among the espinas of a cactus in a field of Van Gogh yellow. Something about his face, some challenge: to do! I set it in front of me. I wanted to buy that painting. Next was a blurry vision of boys & drunk men in a cantina. Next, a faceless war scene; a man holding the lifeless body of a child. The last was one of the last in the pile: "DRIVE!" I thought—a woman wearing my grandmother's scarf on her head holding her hands in front of her on the steering wheel of the go-nowhere car. I stared into that pic, those starfish hands, deciding. Somewhere inside, the printer in me, the craftperson, my grandmother said: "This would make a great cover!" (Something about the immediacy of the "arrow" on the right that drives one to act, to open.) And I laid it out on the floor in front of me with the others—in the form of a Tarot cross. I was moving to Boulder. It was always my intention to purchase some of Dylan's paintings. Soon I would have a salary. Dylan interrupted my ruminating by handing me a book by Argentinian poet in exile, Juan Gelman. I opened it at random to a poem that would change my life forever, that's how much it spoke to me: "You Are." I sat there, stunned, gonging, my thoughts in a stammer. I picked up the four and gazed at them, in the order they appear in this book. Not deciding. At the last, I said again, thinking of my favorite lived line of poetry by Robert Creeley: "DRIVE!"

And knew I had a book. I had four. And, a face.


Blogger black_magdalene said...

I work as a librarian for the book distributor Ingram. Is there a way you can put me in touch with Dylan Morgan or at least pass on this message to him, so he can contact me on his own?

Thank you for your help. Please let me know if you have any questions at

9/7/12 08:01  
Blogger black_magdalene said...

Hello, Lorna, I don’t know if you received this message last month, but I’m still in need of Dylan Morgan’s contact information. It’s in regards to his book, Our Chosen Harvest. Thank you so much for your help.

10/8/12 07:36  

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