Richard Brautigan was born on January 30, 1935, in Tacoma, Washington.
In general, people who write or talk about Brautigan tend to be either snidely patronizing or vacuously adoring. — Terence Malley
This is so true. I tend to be vacuously adoring of Brautigan. His writings were so surreal and came to me at a time in my life when LSD made sense of everything he said. I read him in the 70s. I still have copies of all of his books in my library, and in writing this, I feel nostalgia for them, maybe wanting to read them again and revisit the likes of Trout Fishing in America Shorty. And as I do some research about him for this little post in his honor, I realize that some of my creative writing may have been influenced by him … it’s a strange feeling, that.
Brautigan was still around when I first came to San Francsico on my long lingering weekends, and when I lived up in Sonoma County. I never ran into him, although people were rumored to have spotted him from time to time. He was a bit of a recluse and difficult to find.
Brautigan wrote during that time when The Beats and The Hippies overlapped, or maybe they didn’t overlap and there was just a big gap in there, waiting for someone like Brautigan to fall into it. His work was a bunch of little metaphors wrapped up in a big metaphor and I remember having to sit and read a few pages before I could get into the cadence and the rhythm and abstraction of his stories. I read Trout Fishing In America from beginning to end the first time and when I was finished I had no idea what it was about, or, who or what Trout Fishing in America was. But that just made me laugh and I read it again.
I didn’t know the full dimensions of forever, but I knew it was longer than waiting for Christmas to come. — Richard Brautigan
Swiss TV Interview of Richard Brautigan, 1983:
Brautigan passed away on September 16, 1984, in Bolinas, California.
Check out Richard Brautigan on amazon: