TRANSLATIONS:

Richard Fariña:
Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me

New York: Random House, April 28, 1966.

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"I been down so long, seem like up to me,
Gal of mine got a heart like a rock in the sea."

--Furry Lewis, "Turn Your Money Green"
(adapted by Eric von Schmidt as "Stick With Me, Baby"
on the album Dick Fariña & Eric von Schmidt)




THIS NOVEL WAS DECODED WITH...

THE CAPTAIN MIDNIGHT
CODE-O-GRAPH


PURSUIT OF THE Real,
and escape from Reality.

An interpretation by
Douglas Cooke,

licensed Fariña nut



i.) Background: The "Cornell School"

Published April 28, 1966, two days before Fariña died in a motorcycle accident, Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me became a cult favorite among fans of his music and eventually attracted the attention of a more literary readership through Fariña's association with Thomas Pynchon, who wrote a blurb for the novel. Fariña had mentioned Pynchon in the notes for his song "V." on Celebrations for a Grey Day and also in his 1963 essay, "Monterey Fair," published in Mademoiselle (March 1964). But Fariña was known for his name-dropping, and cover blurbs are often commercially motivated. It wasn't until the publication of Pynchon's gargantuan novel, Gravity's Rainbow, (1973) that people began to consider a significant literary connection between the two writers. That formidable brick of a book, which many regard as the most important novel of the latter half of the 20th century, was "Dedicated to Richard Fariña," and that tribute alone makes Been Down So Long worthy of literary study.

In time Pynchon and Fariña came to be regard as part of a "Cornell School" of writers, which included David Shetzline (author of the "ecological" novel, Heckletooth 3, and DeFord, which was also dedicated to Fariña), and M.F. Beal (author of Angel Dance, a detective story with a Chicana lesbian investigator). Gene Bluestein discerns three preoccupations that characterize the Cornell school: "political paranoia (the idea of a Big Brother state), despair over the destruction of the environment, and an awareness of the special impact on the American mind of all levels of popular culture." (1)

The most famous author associated with Cornell was of course Vladimir Nabokov, one of the great writers of this century, who taught at Cornell in the late fifties while Pynchon and Fariña were students there. Robert Scholes later recalled Fariña's enthusiasm for the great novelist:

"About thirty years ago when I was a graduate student at Cornell, I was standing in the hall of the building one day. A young man, an undergraduate who was aspiring to be a writer at that time, came up to me. He had a book in his hand, and he grabbed me and said, "you've got to hear this, you've go to listen to this." He opened the book, and he started to read. "Lo-li-ta, trippingly on the tongue," and he went on and read me the first several paragraphs of Lolita. This young man, whose name was Richard Fariña, became a writer and wrote a book called Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me." (2)
Fariña obviously emulated Nabokov's lyricality, his humor, his keen eye for the absurd and the pathetic in modern American life, and the use of these absurdities--rather than conventional literary devices--to tell his story. Nabokov bridged the generations of modernism and postmodernism, particularly in his influence on the Cornell School.

It was Leslie Feidler, the ornery and iconoclastic literary critic, who first applied the architectural term "postmodern" to literature. He once explained the term thus:

I'll try to say for the last time why I invented this term to begin with. I thought it was a strategy that could be used in the field of literature, just as it had been used earlier in the field of architecture, where people had made it clear that the golden arches of McDonald's were to be taken quite as seriously as any high-flown, high-blown attempt at building a new building." (3)
Like Nabokov and Pynchon, Fariña gathers the trappings of contemporary American life in all its tawdry plastic commercialism, forging from the materials of pop culture a common language between himself and his contemporary audience to tell a tale of high seriousness through low humor. And like so many of the novels of Nabokov and Pynchon, Fariña's novel is a quest.

ii.) The Quest for the Real

Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me is the tale of a world-weary traveler who has been on a voyage and seen many horrors and has returned a changed man, like the blue-eyed son in Dylan's "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall." But while the blue-eyed son returns galvanized, ready to proselytize, determined to confront the injustices he has seen, Fariña's character, Gnossos Pappadopoulis, is reluctant to talk about what he has seen. Like the taciturn heroes of Hemingway's fiction, he is morally paralyzed by his experiences and now seeks only alleviation and escape. Fariña's model for Gnossos is Odysseus, weary veteran of the Trojan War, the prototypal anti-hero, the original draft-dodger, who cares not for glory but just wants to go home. Gnossos' first mission in the novel is to find a home, an apartment. The lyrical overture of the novel is awash in allusions to The Odyssey. The entire novel, especially the geographical names of this fictional college town (based on Ithaca in Upstate New York, home of Cornell Univesity and of course namesake of Odysseus's island), is littered with absurd classical allusions: we hear of Harpy Creek, Dryad Road, the Plato Pit (a restaurant), Circe Hall (a women's dorm) , Hector Ramrod Hall, Minotaur Hall, Labyrinth Hall, etc. Even Gnossos's ridiculous name is oddly allusive. Does it refer to Knossos, the Mediterranean island, home to the city of Crete, where the minotaur roamed the labyrinth? (At one point we are told that Gnossos "bellowed like a Cretan bull." (165)) (4) The name may also allude to the Greek word for "knowledge." The root is "gno", cognate with the English "know," and it yields the verb "gignósko," (to know) and the nouns, "gnõsis" (knowledge), "gnóstes" (one who knows), and "anágnosis" (recognition), often used as a literary term to refer to recognition scenes in drama.

Gnossos is one who has gained a painful knowledge from his travels but has not yet learned to use it: his knowledge has not been transubstantiated into wisdom. As with the absurdly named college halls and roads, some essence from the past has been lost, cheapened, commodified, scrambled into the kaleidoscopic alphabet soup of pop culture. Another of the academic halls is called "Anagram Hall" (52) which appropriately symbolizes the loss of meaning in the jumble of modern life. Later in the novel we will meet G. Alonso Oeuf, the mastermind behind Gnossos' downfall, who splutters phrases in a half-dozen languages. But behind his pseudo-sophistication lies nothing but clichés; he too represents the fallen state of the modern world. Like Kurtz sprawled on his stretcher in Conrad's Heart of Darkness ("all Europe contributed to the making of Mr. Kurtz"), Oeuf seems a conglomeration of enervated cultures, the weary terminal of history, an ailing, infirm, meaningless scrapheap of allusions rotting in postmodern squalor.

Gnossos' quest is to find the meaning behind the easy allusions. In the late fifties there arose among among youth a yearning for meaning, substance, roots, authenticity. Authenticity above all was idealized by young discontents. It was, in varying degrees, a catalyst of the Beat movement, the Blues Revival, and the back-to-land communes and pastoral pilgrimages of the Hippie movement. But it was a particular fetish of the urban folk revival. In Positively 4th Street, David Hajdu explains the appeal of folk music among college students in the late fifties by noting that it coincided with the invention of plastic: folk music "put a premium on naturalness and authenticity during a boom in man-made materials, especially plastics." It was "a music that glorified in the unique and the weird, challenged conformity and celebrated regionalism during the rise of mass media, national brands, and interstate travel." (5)

Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me is set mainly in 1958, when the folk music revival was just warming up (the Kingston Trio scored a hit that year with the badman ballad "Tom Dooley"). But aside from the guitars, dulcimers and autoharps at house of Grun, a friend of Gnossos, most of the musical references are to the jazz of the Beatniks. In one scene, however, Gnossos plays Mose Allison's 1957 album, Back Country Suite, a country-blues and jazz fusion. As Mose Allison blends the two genres, Gnossos falls somewhere between the two movements. His outward rhythm is the syncopated beat of jazz, but his inner song is the lonesome highway of folk. He shares with both the beats and the folkies a contempt for the bourgeois, the superficial, the mass-marketed.

Yet even Gnossos, for all his polymath learning, makes constant allusions to Plastic Man, Captain Marvel, the Green Lantern, and other comic book heroes. (6) He also identifies himself with--and sometimes poses as--various figures throughout history: Montezuma (22), Dracula, Prometheus (91), the Holy Ghost (171), Ravi Shankar (171), Winnie the Pooh. He is a keeper of the flame, a seeker of the Holy Grail. He is the antecedent of the character in Joni Mitchell's anthem, "Woodstock," who says, "I don't know who I am, but life is for learning." Gnossos himself realizes that he has "too many roles to play" (25). Significantly, Gnossos' favorite superhero is Plastic Man, who could stretch himself into any shape. Plastic Man seems to have been a favorite of Fariña's as well; he mentioned him in his essay "The Writer as Cameraman." (Mimi, in the notes to Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone, explained the reference thus: "As for Plasticman, Dick just loved all that weirdness, all that cartoon-craziness; he really had that great sense of mush! I have an odd feeling that they've met by now, he and Plasticman and all the rest. I hope they're having a good laugh.") (7)

Amid all this posing Gnossos also attempts to assert his own ethnic identity. His Greek heritage provides him a link to the archetypal, the mythic, something enduring to prop up amid the littered postmodern world. Yet this self-assertion of identity often takes mundane forms. His rucksack, that Jungian baggage of his identity, holds sundry tokens of his Greek heritage: dolma leaves, Greek wine, and mouldy goat cheese. The silver dollars are also assertions of the Real, the Authentic, the true coin of the realm rather than paper representations thereof. Explaining his use of silver dollars to Dean Magnolia, he warns of "parasitic corruption that gets spread through the handling of dollar bills." (54) When a cashier questions the silver dollars, Gnossos claims that he is Montezuma and threatens to tear out her heart and eat it raw. More posing, more delusions of heroic grandeur, the assertion of an ancient archetype to muscle out the present, the ephemeral, the corrupt, the artificial. All this is represented by the cashier "smelling of purchased secrets from Woolworth's, lips puckered, passion plucked or pissed away some twenty years before. The resigned are my foes." (22)

Gnossos has a similarly arrogant attitude to a platinum-haired girl working in a drugstore. "Deaf to her doom," he imagines, and ascribes another pathetic narrative to her life:

See her in a year, straddling some pump-jockey in the front seat of a '46 Ford, knocked up. Watching Gunsmoke in their underwear, cans of Black Label, cross-eyed kid screaming in a smelly crib. Ech. Immunity not granted to all.
As in the Montezuma scene, Gnossos requires heroic posing to assert his superiority over her: explaining his use of bath oil, he says, "Ancient custom is all, balm for warrior, makes you good to feel, right?" (171)

Like his alternating identities, the Greek food and the silver dollars are tumbled together in the rucksack with tokens of childhood fantasy, such as rabbits' feet ("Placate all the gods and demons, finger in every mystical pie" (114)) and the Captain Midnight Code-O-Graph, which loses a spring at a significant moment in the story. When Gnossos learns that he has been partly responsible for the death of Simon, a fellow student who killed himself upon learning that his girlfriend was in love with Gnossos (who had seduced her in an earlier chapter), he experiences what may be the silliest epiphany in all literature:

...while roaming the streets in a hopeless attempt to pace away an oily guilt, to purge the accusing picture of Simon sucking an exhaust pipe, he looked into his rucksack for a vial of paregoric to soothe his agitated nerves. But instead he found the Code-O-Graph, neatly sprung in two where it had been sitting, with all innocence of inanimate purpose, in a bed of rabbit's feet. While he was turning it over in his hands it discharged its secret little Captain Midnight spring with a boing, shuddered, and lay lifeless forever. (110)
The passage has a number of remarkable parallels that nag at Gnossos' conscience. Gnossos' craving for an opium-laced cigarette to smoke corresponds to the image of Simon sucking on an exhaust pipe; one is an unconscious mimickry of the other. The reference to "oily guilt" recalls an earlier scene where Monsignor Putti comes to deliver Extreme Unction but instead anoints Gnossos' feet in a "lovely sacrament," explaining that one's feet "carry one to sin." (50) Yet now Gnossos seeks to "pace away" his guilt by "roaming the streets," and he finds the epiphany of his lost innocence in "a bed of rabbit's feet." (110) The themes of escape and guilt, futile cautionary superstitions and reckless behavior are so inextricable linked that they seem to hound each other in an eternal, hellish circle.

iii.) The Deathwish

Am I reading too much into the contents of the rucksack? Perhaps. But this epiphany is similar to another in a short story of Fariña's called "The End of a Young Man," in which an American visiting Ireland assists in the bombing of a patrol boat, then finds out that there had been people on board. The young man's discovery that he was responsible for the death of another person brings an end to innocence and youth, just as Gnossos undergoes a fall from innocence, here symbolized by the "boing" of the Code-O-Graph. Carolyn Hester, in an interview with Richie Unterberger in Urban Spacemen and Wayfaring Strangers, (8) reveals that Fariña actually had such an adventure in Ireland, where he was tricked by the IRA into believing that there would be no people aboard the boat he was to bomb. Carolyn Hester makes no reference to the short story, but she believes that Fariña was deeply affected by that experience, and she felt that it explained much of his subsequent behavior. Mimi Fariña also discussed Fariña's morbidity in the notes to Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone. Death haunts Fariñas music as well. The song "Raven Girl," which his liner notes describe as a deathwish, may reflect his guilt over the bombing of the boat.

The sand that inches from the tide
Will claim the steps I sow,
The whispers in the ocean deep
shall pick my weary bones.
Was Fariña haunted by the whispers of the dead? Like Tennyson's Ulysses, who lost so many of his companions at sea, and in old age found that "the deep moans round with many voices," perhaps Fariña was tormented by the memory of the men killed on the boat.

Perhaps this deathwish attracted Fariña to Michelangelo's poem, "Sleep." Fariña quotes this poem both in Been Down So Long and in the short story "The Good Fortune of Stone." In the short story he quotes the poem in the original Italian:

Caro m'è il sonno e più l'esser di sasso
Mentre che'l danno e la vergogna dura,
Non veder, non sentir, m'è gran ventura;
Però non me destar, deh! parla basso.
(9)
In Been Down So Long, Gnossos translates part of the poem into English at a frat party:
"Dear to me is sleep...While evil and shame endure, not to see, not to feel is my good fortune." (30)
Here is a translation of the entire passage:
"Dear to me is sleep, and dearer to be made of stone
While evil and shame endure,
Not to see, not to feel, is to me a good fortune,
Therefore do not wake me. Shh! Speak softly."
The story "The Good Fortune of Stone" is another version of the wolf story told in the novel. Pynchon states in his 1983 introduction to the novel that Fariña told this story many times. The near-death experience recounted in both versions of the wolf story must have touched him profoundly, and this, combined with his feeling of guilt (vergogna), may have given him the conflicting impulses of a deathwish and a feeling of exemption, two impulses which, it seems to me, are never entirely resolved or sorted out from each other in the novel. Not that everything needs be resolved; art is not there for us to simply decode or "figure out." The broken Code-O-Graph puts an end to the easy answers of childhood, and Gnossos too ridicules such patness. When Pamela says, "Must you be so cryptic?" Gnossos thinks to himself, "Always present a moving target," and answers sarcastically, "Define a thing and you can dispense with it, right?" (39)

But sanity for Gnossos would lie somewhere between the untroubled, patly-defined life of Gunsmoke junkies and the nervous energy of the perpetually moving target. Gnossos' deathwish is a yearning for quiescence, for the quelling of his conscience. The impossibility of this yearning gives him a contempt for those who have some modicum of peace in life, those who are "deaf to their own doom." In the song, "Sell-Out Agitation Waltz," Fariña scorns such people "who ain't aware that every morning they wake up dead." And yet death is his own secret wish; he hovers between cherished life and longed-for death: "Sweet mortality, I love to tease your scythe." (169)

Herein lies the protagonist's central conflict. He went in quest of something Real, but he has found and seen things of such terrifying reality that he needs to numb himself. He anesthetizes himself through drugs, through his posture of coolness, through masquerading as superheroes and other heroic figures of myth and history, and most significantly through his declaration of Exemption.

iv.) Exemption

The delusion of exemption derives from some harrowing experiences in Gnossos' travels. He almost died in the frozen snow of the Adirondacks while pursuing a wolf; he witnessed an atom bomb explosion in Las Vegas; and watched someone being tortured by pachucos in New Mexico. His escape from the dangers he experienced has given him, at a conscious level, a belief that he is exempt:

I've been on a voyage, old sport, a kind of quest, I've seen fire and pestilence, symptoms of a great disease. I'm exempt. (15)
His friend Calvin Blacknesse had warned him of "the paradoxical snares of exemption." (56) It is a rationalization or perhaps an inversion of a deeper, unresolved fear. Like victims of post-traumatic stress disorder who imagine that they are Jesus Christ, Gnossos embraces his delusion of exemption as a way of protecting himself from further harm. Like Fariña, Gnossos is haunted by a pandemonium of phobias. He fears demons, monkeys, all manner of bad omens which he seeks to avert by superstitious rituals, such as the Mediterranean apotropaic ritual of clutching the testes. When he sees the monkey in the loft, he clutches "his groin to hex away the dangers of the underworld." (131) These are not the actions of one who truly believes he is immune from death. Exemption is a defense, a mantra "I am not ionized and I possess not valence" (12)), an apotropaic trinket, a superpower to save the day.

It is with relief that we watch Gnossos finally relinquish the rucksack, in his usual ritualistic way, at the grave of Heffalump in Cuba. The rite of passage into manhood seems long overdue, after his pre-novel travels, the death of Simon, his brush with the clap, and the death of Heffalump. There are perhaps too many mini-resolutions in the novel, too many epiphanies, too many karmic adjustments rather than one big, cathartic, aesthetically satisfying climax, and along the way we have to put up with too much of Gnossos' posing and pointless partying. As a result, many critics have overlooked the complexity and significance of the novel altogether, dismissing it as an outdated effort now useful only as a document of its time. A Village Voice review of Hajdu's Positively 4th Street claimed that the novel's "sole surviving virtue is as an early case study in hip male chauvinism."(10)

v.) Layers

I suspect Fariña did want his novel to be, like Fitzgerald's novels of the twenties, a classic representation of the age that formed him. His fault, then, lay not in being oblivious to the chauvinisms and flaws of Gnossos and his age but in spending too much time creating the scene before leaving it. After all, the epigraph to the novel is a quote from Benjamin Franklin, "I must soon quit the scene," which Fariña pulled out of Lord knows where. Clearly Been Down So Long was intended to be a bildungsroman, a coming of age novel, and not just a party novel. As a document of its time, Been Down So Long does not succeed quite as well as The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, which, though taking place five or six years later, has many interesting parallels with Fariña's novel.(11)

There are many other themes in this complex novel that I have not even addressed here, and many aspects that I still do not understand, many allusions to pop culture, literature, science, and math that I just don't get. Furthermore, there is reason to believe that despite the years that Fariña devoted to writing and revising the novel, it never became a fully-realized expression. Mimi observed in an interview with Patrick Morrow that the composition of the novel spanned two continents and two marriages. (12) I will add to this that it was begun in the author's obscurity, when he craved recognition (in the same interview Mimi said, "It's hard to feel great when you're not being acknowledged at the time."), and it was finished when Fariña had achieved the extraordinary success of two critically-acclaimed albums. Most first novels are uneven, revealing imperfectly blended layers of experience, but Fariña's was more uneven than most, begun, according to his own legend, a few minutes after quitting his role as a blind harmonica player huckstering on the streets of France, and completed by a respected musician acclaimed by Pete Seeger and Jean Ritchie. By his own admission, Fariña was still in the process of "resolving the conflict between Inside and Outside," which he describes as Gnossos' role as well, in an article written a few days before he died. (13) A further complication in the novel's genesis is that one of its major innovations, the use of illustrations to portray episodes that would only be alluded to in the text itself, was rejected by the publisher.

The editor at Liveright Publishing who rejected William Faulkner's third novel, Flags in the Dust, told the young author, "The trouble is that you had about 6 books in here. Your were trying to write them all at once." (14) This, I believe, is one of the problems with Fariña's confusing novel, the outcome of two marriages, two continents, two careers, and God knows how many conceptions of what the novel would be. But when reading the first few novels of Faulkner we have the more successfully executed genius of later novels to cast a clearer light on the tentative, gestating ideas of the earlier work. With Fariña we do not have that advantage. Guessing at his literary potential from his novel is a bit like predicting on the basis of Dick Fariña & Eric von Schmidt. We can compare the existing poems and stories, the lyrics, the music itself; we can comb through the liner notes and other scraps we may find, read all the available biographical information and root out the cherished memories of his friends. But we will never see a full maturation of his genius that might have reflected something back upon this first tentative novel. Fariña was sophisticated, well-read, well-traveled, well-rounded. He went to Jesuit schools, attended an Ivy League university on a scholarship, excelled both in the humanities and the sciences, established a reputation both as a writer and a musician, influenced a whole generation of dulcimer players, spun several folk styles together to create a new kind of music that still sounds fresh and unique today, and merged folk and rock with more skill and daring than anyone ever had before. He bridged the vita activa and the vita contemplativa; he celebrated life and yearned for death, and died at the age of 29, two days after this novel was published.

Judy Collins believed that Fariña was just beginning to show a greater awareness of himself in the months before he died, and Joan Baez's tribute to him implies the same. (15) Just as his potential was incalcuable, so must the more shadowy nooks of his novel remain unfathomable.

Douglas Cooke
Brooklyn, 2001.

For further criticism on this novel, see the Literary Criticism page.


FOOTNOTES:

1.) Bluestein, Gene. "Tangled Vines." (a review of Thomas Pynchon's Vineland.) The Progressive. June 1990, Vol. 54, issue 6, p. 42-3.
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2.) Coover, Robert, et al. "Nothing But Darkness and Talk? Writers' Symposium on Traditional Values and Iconoclastic Fiction." Critique. Summer, 1990, vol. 31, issue 4, p. 233ff.
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3.) Ibid.
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4.) Fariña, Richard. Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me. New York: Random House, 1983. The Randon house and Penguin paperbacks are both reprints of the original Random House edition, but the Dell paperback was an entirely different typeset. Therefore, the page numbers in this essay will apply to all but the Dell paperbacks.
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5.) Hajdu, David. Positively 4th Street: The Lives and Times of Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Mimi Baez Fariña, and Richard Fariña. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2001. Pages 10-11.
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6.) When Fariña was writing the book in the early sixties, comic books were just beginning to gain an older audience, as Stan Lee, editor and head writer of Marvel Comics, created a new generation of more realistic superheroes who had real-life problems, neuroses, and foibles. In The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, published two years after Fariña's novel, Tom Wolfe also observes the frequent identification with comic book heroes, and their leotarded images began appearing on album covers around this time. However, Fariña's novel takes place in 1958, and Stan Lee's first experiments with the new comic book hero, The Fantastic Four, did not arrive until 1961.
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7.) Quoted in Fariña, Richard. Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone. New York: Random House. p. 40 (p. 36 of the Dell paperback). Mr. Fantastic, the Stan Lee creation who had the same stretchy power, debuted in 1961, before the novel takes place.
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8.) Unterberger, Richie. Urban Spacemen and Wayfaring Strangers: Overlooked Innovators and Eccentric Visionaries of '60s Rock. San Francisco: Miller Freeman Books, 2000.
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9.) Fariña, Richard. "The Good Fortune of Stone." Reprinted in Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone, p. 161 (p. 151 of the Dell paperback).
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10.) Robert Christgau, "Folking Around," Village Voice, June 26, 2001, p. 79.
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11.) Been Down shares many themes with The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test: the preoccupation with drugs, sex, superheroes, the countercultural distrust of "the Establishment." Gnossos' urge to depart from society, conflicting with his awareness that one always has to return to that society, finds its parallel in the dilemma of the Merry Tricksters: no matter what heights of discovery one reached through acid, one always had to return to earth, one always had to come down. Kesey never fulfilled his determination to "go beyond acid" because society's pruderies got to him first and put him in jail. Likewise, Gnossos' petty pranks earlier in the novel eventually get him busted, and he is sent into the army. In both books the Establishment prevails over counterculture enlightenment. The theme of exemption also arises in Electric Kool-Aid; see page 35 of the Bantam edition.
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12.) Morrow, Patrick. "Interview with Mimi Fariña." Popular Music and Society, vol. 2, no. 1, Fall 1972. This interview is available on this website. Click here.
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13.) "The Writer as Cameraman." Long Time Coming and a Long Time Gone," p. 41-42.
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14.) Blotner, Joseph. Faulkner: A Biography. Revised one-volume edition. New York: Vintage, 1991. p. 223.
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15.) Collins, Judy. The Judy Collins Songbook. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1969. p. 185; and Baez, Joan. Daybreak. New York: Dial Press, June, 1969. p. 135-136. I quote Judy Collins:

"I've always thought that Richard was just breaking through into some greater perception of himself and other people when he died. He knew there was someone at home inside his wildly imaginative head, and he was starting to come into contact with it, to let it out."
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