I will be the reaper
If you will be
The keeper of my heart  –  Indigo Girls, Keeper of my Heart

I want to notice, as many other writers have already done, that Denis Johnson has died. I met Denis about a year ago when I was teaching at Cornell. He came to do a reading and there was a dinner after to which I was generously invited. It will surprise absolutely no one to hear that he was a great raconteur as well as a great listener, and I looked forward to the day I got to see him again, as he lived not close to me, but not so far either. I regret his passing very much.

I am also mourning the loss of another writer. I never met Brian Doyle, except through his novels and essays, but I feel that he is there, more so than most writers, there in his words – a man particularly attentive to the beauty of the world, his stories told with an uncommon tenderness. There are many, many books that I love, but the magical Mink River has a special place in my heart. Of course, he had me with his talking crow.
We are losing people we can ill afford to lose.