Tell us a story, Daddy!
Hemingway, Callas, and Me
I love the story of a work’s
creation. Almodóvar's
Broken
Embraces.
Truffaut's Day for
Night.
Fellini’s 81/2. A Chorus
Line
and Every Little Step. Bob
Dylan recording “Sad-Eyed Lady
of the Lowlands” in Nashville
for
Blonde on Blonde with
virtually one take.

The poem offered here, “Feast,”
is my tribute to Ernest Heming-
way’s writing of his memoir,
A Moveable Feast. That book
sprang from the 1956 discovery
in the Hotel Ritz of his youthful
Paris notes from the 1920s.
PARIS 1964
Ernest Hemingway
Collection/
John F. Kennedy
Presidential Library
and Museum, Boston
Ernest Hemingway,1959.
Courtesy of Greg Kindall
Seven Roads
© 2013 Raymond Zagar
Paris, 1964.
First edition jacket
of
A Moveable Feast
by Ernest Hemingway,
published by Jonathan Cape.
Used by permission of The
Random House Group Limited.
© 2013 Andrew Clarke
2
Started in my cabin in Big Sur,
California, it matured, like the
oak pieces I worked on at my
bench outside, with chiseling,
filing, and sanding for forty
years.

Competitions by the Pirate’s
Alley Faulkner Society of New
Orleans and Fish Publishing of
County Cork, Ireland, have both
honored it as a finalist, but it
has never been published.

Hemingway finished
A Moveable Feast, as poignant a
book as any of his novels, a year
before his death in 1961. It was
published in 1964.

I happened to be newly arrived
in Paris that year in time to read,
at a sunny café one May
morning, of its long-awaited
release. I threw the newspaper in
the air, whipped my Vespa
across the Seine to Brentano’s
(now gone, alas, like the years)
on the Avenue de l’Opéra, and
clutched a copy of that first
edition, ink still drying, in my
hands before the newspaper
floated back down to that café
tabletop on the other side of the
river. (Well, something like
that.) I think I might have read
the book cover to cover that
afternoon in the Tuileries
Garden.

There’s a little more of this
in the Maria Callas story.
Remarkably, in my personal
chronology, seeing Maria Callas
at the Opéra and buying the
just released
Moveable Feast
occurred within weeks, if not
days, of each other. And like
his book, her Paris
Norma
performances of 1964 and ‘65
were among the last public
output of her opera career.
Furthermore, echoing
Hemingway’s own 1956
discovery in the Ritz, I
discovered that copy of
A Moveable Feast (pictured
above) forty years later in a
carton of
my Paris things.

I don’t know if the poem lives
up to this account. But I will say
with the brio of Hemingway, the
passion of Callas, and the love
they both had for the City of
Light, I do believe this Feast is
worth a sou.
Andrew Clarke
© 2013 Raymond Zagar
THE NIGHT
WE SAW CALLAS
A story in four pages, illustrated.
FEAST
A poem in three pages,
99 lines, illustrated.
One dollar
FEAST
AND CALLAS
Story and poem.
One dollar and fifty cents
www.AndrewClarkeStories.com © 2013 Andrew Clarke.
For accounts of the recording of Blonde on Blonde see Bob Dylan: Behind the Shades:
Take Two
(2000) by Clinton Heylin and Bob Dylan in America by Sean Wilentz (2010).
Paris1964
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