Letter to Frank from John Perlman, 1973

dear Frank,
I have just picked up Quadrifariam, just begun the reading thru. Yes, it sums greater than book
(as isolate and so I begin to respond to a mystery) not yet fully grasped but the immediate response is
pleasure at the words, their working sensed right & as you set the table so I will take what
nourishment I can.
But its publication prompts me to write to you, just back in the city after months & to ask you I am doing
a mimeo mag called SHUTTLE, the nature of its utility & larger, the act of homesteading both in/at
place, and in self. Perhaps words for self-at-home to exhaust self and words.
But would much like to include some of your work in the weave.
I don't know if at this point such appearances interest you, if you see such partial senses as valid.
But this issue wants and would be much enlarged by just such movement as your work provides.
I hope all is well for you and your family, and has been.

Love John

Aug 21, 73

dear Frank,
Sorry to be so late in responding to your note & the poems included. Much, as always, has taken place
in the interim. I have been forced to leave the city. But once out, feel more at peace for having evacuated.
I thank you for the poems & will use them when SHUTTLE finally does. (a month or two).
Also plan to try (along with Mike Heller) a few books, financed by subscription.
Cid tells me you have a little book going around, I'm hopeful at some future point we might be able to
talk about doing it, should you desire such.
Thanks for THE FOURTH. I look forward to LUMEN GLORIAE. & need it be said,
I have learned more from you about poetry, and about the tenor of life & word-in-use that make for a
syntax, vector, in what you have called the 'desperate need to speak' in one letter.... more from the
human contact, than from any other. If you feel me ungrateful, I am not.
I wrote back in anger, under the burden of what I felt friendship required. Whatever your following
silence spoke to, it was painful. My anger was wrong, callow, but it had certain assumptions of feeling-bond.
As I read the silence, I was wrong in them, but how can anyone read the unformed silences?
I guess we have done each other a disservice, tho I won't further presumeto interpret.
As well as such things as Will's party, the Ohio reading, I'd like to add three additional memories:
the joy for me of many talks
your visit to our idyllic setting
your move to Brooklyn
The last two I did for love. I do not apologize for so acting or for the burden of such motives. But, as love, no burden was ever intended other than touch & even that under the most unimposing of circumstances.
The talks remain & I cherish them,
I would hope the silences broken, healed

Love John (John Perlman)


  1. Claudia,

    I wonder what caused the argument between Perlman & Samperi ( "My anger was wrong, callow, but it had certain assumptions of feeling-bond").

    The tone of the second letter sounds penitent.

  2. "pleasure at the words, their working sensed right" :
    and, in the second letter : "more from the human contact"

    I, too, got my copy of QUADRIFARIUM in 1973 it (and 43 dozen other things changedmydirection and by the end of 1974 I dropped out entirely to mullthingsover

    and and and was/ am / went 'along for the ride" in Great Company in (John's) SHUTTLE

    and, I don't really sense any well anger out side of their demands of what is being produced as writings well, even a "writing down the bones"

    " life, I'm in it for the poetry "

    C, keep it coming. all that you are doing is a 'right-now' and needed re:visit.

  3. Thank you Conrad and Ed,
    Conrad it was wonderful speaking with you on the phone last week and I am so grateful for both of you that have a connection with my father.
    Your words are so "right-on" and through you I am transported back to the 1970's when my father was writing to live.
    Thank you both, C


Post a Comment

Popular Posts