At the moment, the Barnes and Noble web site is quoting two of my reviews for books they're selling. One of the reviews was published in 1972 (of Dow Mossman's novel, The Stones of Summer) and the other a few months ago (of Einstein in Berlin.) That's a span of some 30 years, during which time every cell of my body has changed at least four times.
Now in addition to feeling ancient I can feel virtuous. I got a letter from the marketing director of Copper Canyon Press up in Port Townsend, Washington, handwritten: "Thank you so much for your perceptive review of One Man Boat: The George Hitchcock Reader, recently published in the San Francisco Chronicle. I was with George on the Fourth of July and he was very pleased with the review. In my humble opinion George is a national literary treasure, and your review goes a long way to spreading that news. My deepest appreciation-Joseph Bednarik."
As far as I can figure out, Hitchcock must be in his late eighties now. I'm happy he was pleased, and glad to be the one who showed him the respect he deserves. Despite the fact that it took me an uncommonly long time to fight off certain surprisingly lively feelings based on his rejection of some of my poems more than thirty years ago. I could have been a contender, George! But maybe you were right.
According to Meister Eckhart, a good person is one who praises good people. I agree that it's a good thing to do and I'm glad I did it, but it seems more like justice to me.
With any luck, you can read the Hitchcock review by clicking here.