2 August 2014

My Teacher Paul St. Pierre



Learned Paul St. Pierre died this week. Among Canadian writers I would rank only the late George Woodcock ahead of him. If you have not read all his books you really ought to. My favourite is "In the Navel of the Moon," a poetic story about Mexico and its and our place in the ongoing war crime we know as the war on drugs.

St. Pierre was the best story teller I have ever come across. Better, even, than Bukowski, if only because he, unlike Bukowski, got the fuck out of America and chose Canada as his home. We have lots to write about up here and my country is so much more than the cesspool Bukowski inhabited although we are sure as fuck headed in that very direction.

It would not be an understatement to say the Dope City Free Press would never have existed if I had not enrolled in a creative writing class, one of many he put on out here in the motherfucking sticks, St. Pierre put on near my home after he retired from Dope City's slowly dying newspaper of record. I have only ever taken two writing classes since I turned my life over to the great sawmills of my land. His was the second.

I wrote him a few years back to thank him for helping me and letting him know what I was doing. He seemed pleased.

Now I think I will go drink that scotch that helps me when people I like die.


11 comments:

ib said...

I have not read St. Pierre. Unless I stumbled across him in digest form, and promptly forgot so. Which, if the case, is my loss no doubt.

Sadly, my own foray into the world of creative writing classes went tits up with everything else there for a spell. One word best sums up the experience: dropout, albeit reluctantly, without the heroic subversion of a Cohen or a Trocchi, even.

"In the Navel of the Moon" is a nice title. I ought to reflect upon it some time. I would join you in a glass of scotch but Milo is currently down on the carpet with the launchpad and space shuttle, so I will have to wait until I have put him to bed.

Forgive me if I've been monopolizing the comments around here. I've been itching for an hit of the unflinching stuff, and I knew I could rely on you to keep the timber rolling. The wheelman and the plumber seem to have taken my cue and lit out on hiatus for their own reasons.

I started out the weekend meaning to post, but got blindsided before I even began.

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

The Wheelman busies himself on the dread facebook and driving the Wasted to and fro rehab in post-Bush America. The Turd Man is on the run.

RossK said...

Man.

I miss the Wheelman's blog.

Great tribute Beer.

.

karen said...

Ah shoot. I'm sorry to hear this. I loved Paul St Pierre. His books were always kicking around at my Grandma's. They published a column by him in the local free paper when I was in my late teens and early 20's. I used to cut them out and save them. He was great: wise and funny. I'm really sorry he's gone.

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

Gazz - I miss the Wheelman's blog too. Old punkrockers cannot half tell some stories. Trouble is keeping a blog on the go for a good long time is not for everybody.

Glad you liked what I wrote.

Karen - Lucky for us here in BC Paul St. Pierre's books are readily available. His widely syndicated column was the only thing worth reading in those community papers who chose to run it. He was a wise and funny man.

Your driver said...

Marry me and I will move to Canada and write story. I'm tired of this dump.

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

At long last I have been proposed to. On Dope City's gay pride day of all things. The Canucks will win the Stanley Cup first.

Your driver said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

Sad to hear it. I hope he is keeping his fixes as small as possible.

Your driver said...

It turns out I was spreading a vile rumor. The Turd Man was in trouble but not the trouble I thought he was in. He called me up this morning to yell at me. I have never been happier to get yelled at. He's a good guy and we were back to being friends pretty quick. He's up north of here living the good life after a bad accident. I told him to write more.

By the way, look for more from me. The rehab fired me, which is probably just as well. I've got some free time and I've got stories to tell.

uniplmr1 said...

Thank you