Episodes

Pierre Delattre, Author
Pierre Delattre, Author Graywolf Press $11 (190p) ISBN 978-1-55597-180-9
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Poet, street minister, traveler and lover, Delattre ( Tales of a Dalai Lama ) has lived a rich life, and he recounts it in 92 two-page vignettes. Though the episodes stand on their own and Delattre encourages browsing, some readers may wish for a more developed narrative. Still, he tells amusing tales about his childhood and about people like the pest who prompted his friends to hold a fund-raising ``Get Rid of Richard Night.'' He opened ``an experimental coffeehouse ministry'' in San Francisco and, as ``the beatnik priest,'' was featured in Time and Newsweek. In Mexico, he barely escaped from two thugs and also met an Aztec-featured shoeshine boy who read Proust with his Francophile sailor father. Delattre married, divorced, found new love, studied and taught yoga, believes in UFOs and reports having a spontaneous orgasm after viewing a full moon. He has encountered the famous: he recalls concert promoter Bill Graham's beginnings, how author Richard Brautigan ``could get drunk on anything'' and how Neal Cassady died with Delattre's address in his pocket. In reaction to the latter news, Delattre decided, ``I wanted to burn a slow flame, and last a long time.'' (June)
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