The best way to save your photographs for posterity is to digitalize them. While paper fades and gets lost or destroyed, once digtalized your photos become immortal. As an added bonus, everyone can copy them, further insuring their survival. Anyway, I decided to put a few up for your perusal, in no particular order and for no particular reason other than I thought they might be interesting or at least enterainingly weird.
My mother and her brother in 1944.
Me at the age of three with a bow tie predating George Will.
My father smoking outside The Tavern in Westfield shortly before his death.
Me putting a magic spell on Monique's garden around 1999.
Boston Mayor Ray Flynn and Mitch Ogulewicz.
Doyle the Twig Painter in 2002.
Northampton's Packards in the year 2000.
Springfield art show with a portrait of Keith Sikes and a girl with a gun.
Shirtless, stoned and speechifying at my International Headquarters in Amherst in 2003.
Jay Libardi in 1985.
Wilted rose from Jay Libardi's casket, 1994.
by Ken Kesey
Hey, Jerry - what's happening? I caught your funeral. Weird.
Big Steve was good. And Grisman. Sweet sounds.
But what really stood out - stands out - is the thundering silence,
the lack, the absence of that golden Garcia lead line,
of that familiar slick lick with the uptwist at the end,
that merry snake twining through the woodpile, flickering
in and out of the loosely stacked chords -
a wriggling mystery, bright and slick as fire - suddenly gone.
And the silence left in its wake was - is - positively ear-splitting.
I remember standing out in the pearly early dawn
after the Muir Beach Acid Test, leaning on the top rail
of a driftwood fence with you and Lesh and Babbs,
watching the world light up, talking about our glorious future.
The gig had been semi-successful,
and the air was full of exulted fantasies.
Babbs whacks Phil on the back. "Just like the big time, huh Phil?"
"It is! It is the big time! Why, we could cut
a chart-busting record to-fucking-morrow!"
"Yeah right," you said,(holding up that digitally challenged hand
the way you did when you wanted to call attention to the truth
or the lack thereof) "--and a year from tomorrow we'll be
recording a "Things Go Better With Coke" commercial!"
You could be a sharp-tongued popper-of-balloons
when you were so inclined, you know. A real bastard.
You were the sworn enemy of hot air and commercials,
however righteous the cause or lucrative the product.
Nobody ever heard you use that microphone as a pulpit.
No anti-war rants, no hymns to peace.
No odes to the trees and All Things Organic.
No ego-deaths or born-againnesses.
No devils denounced no gurus glorified.
No dogmatic howlings that I ever caught wind of.
In fact, your steadfast denial of dogma
was as close as you ever came to having a creed.
And to the very end, Old Timer, you were true to that creed.
No commercials. No trendy spins. No bayings of belief.
And if you did have any dogma you surely kept it tied up
under the back porch where a smelly old hound belongs.
I guess that's what I mean about a loud silence.
Like Michaelangelo said about sculpting,
"The statue exists inside the block of marble,
all you have to do is chip away the stone you don't need."
You were always chipping away at the superficial.
It was the false notes you didn't play
that kept that lead line so golden pure.
It was the words you didn't sing.
So this is what we are left with, Jerry:
This Golden Silence.
It rings on and on without any hint of let up - on and on.
And I expect it will still be ringing years from now.
Because you're still not playing falsely.
Because you're still not singing "Things Go Better With Coke."