My writing partner, Penn State ’88

Dave Kravetz, his eyes through the smoke watching me read his poems, all those papers in his gunny sack, his camo jacket and cigarettes, his bleached hair a frozen wave crashing over one eye, his bad temperament (some story about him getting violent with his parents and threatening them with a gun, he wouldn’t talk about)—his bad smoker’s breath, his chapped hands, how the fingernails looked more like toes, misshapen, transplanted, cloven. Walking the campus with Dave laughing and smoking and pushing each other, two young writers hanging on for dear life.

Categories: musings, writing

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20 replies

  1. Lovely images Bill. That hair breaking like a wave, his cloven fingernails – just perfect. You’ve conjured a whole person in so few words – magic

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like this form for you. It’s like a verbal Polaroid print.


    • Hey, that’s good Kevin, thanks. I’m just aping back what I’ve been reading this week, that’s given me some new inspiration to try a different format. Freaking Raymond Carver poetry collection, rereading it, blowing my mind again, as if I had any left.


  3. frozen wave hair reminds me of flock of seagulls.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I thought Flock of Seagulls too. And funny thing is, that fleshed out the rest of him for me visually as well. Never set eyes not the guy, but I can tell you what he looked like. I may be wrong, but I can tell you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great little snapshot. Looks like you’re working on some shorter form stuff. Really full of character for the space.


  6. I never understood the whole writing partner thing. How, exactly, does that work? The end product couldn’t possibly be a 50/50 split, could it?


    • He wasn’t a writing partner in that sense, he was a guy I befriended and the two of us wrote, though not on shared projects. That’s misleading. I’ve read the same about writing partners and man, doesn’t sound appealing to me at all. Can you spell control freak?


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