20 January 2013

remembering Saki

this afternoon I saw "Just a Gigolo" & it was a double treat.  I've just postd abt Maurice Roeves.  the play takes place at La Fonda de Taos where Angelo Ravagli brings the paintings of D. H. Lawrence to sell to Saki Karavas.  I knew Saki in his last years.

in late dec of 1990 I visitd Taos for the first time.  here's some of what I wrote in Wanderbuch:

...minor blizzard began. to get out of it we poppd into La Fonda to look at the paintings by Leon Gaspard & Henry Koerner.  Johnny    the old Tennessean at the desk   told us D. H. Lawrence's paintings were in his boss' office & we'd have to pay a buck apiece to view them. we pd & walkd in. some people were talking to the hotel's owner Saki Karavas but as soon as they left we introducd ourselves. D startd speaking Greek & the colorful Saki wdn't let him go. they chatterd for an hour in that crampd overheatd office until Prof. George Cooper & a visiting French scholar arrivd to take Saki to dinner. the storm had abatd so we went around the corner to El Patio for a lovely dinner.

here's a picture I took of Saki in the lobby:

2 days later I wrote:

from the St. Francis church in Ranchos we went to the lobby of La Fonda   the Chateau Marmont of New Mexico   to chat with Prof. Cooper while we waitd for Saki Karavas to return from the post office.  he took us to lunch at a nearby watering hole where he confessd he'd made love in every room in his hotel.  he & D chatterd in Greek abt politics while George & I talkd abt the royal family of Romania.  several times during the meal Saki jumpd up to greet this one & that one.  we returnd to the lobby of the hotel where we were joind by Nicole   the French professor just back from visiting the Lawrence shrine with a Sweiss woman who's written a feminist play abt Lawrence.  the conversation roamd from the idiocy of a people who wd elect Bush-Qualyle to the late plays of Tennessee Williams. it felt like the fabled salons of another day.

here I am in Saki's office with some of the paintings (which in the play are projectd on stage):

& here I am with the man himself:

after that first meeting I wrote this:


framd by leering oils
of D. H. Lawrence
Saki sat across from us
at his desk

when he saw us stare
at the row
of identical loafers
against one wall
he twinkld
"they're Lawrence's"

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