Wednesday, 11 February 2009

06 February 2009

remember Bruce Rockwell sitting in his room with a major decision to make one May night, which was, go back to Denver or go stay in New York in advertising. I was on a bunk with a critical review in my hands. I threw it out of my hands and it landed at his feet. “That’s what I think of critics!” I yelled. Bruce Rockwell brooded over his destiny. Suddenly he got up and walked out. He had decided. There was some sort of Gen. MacArthur in him. Now he was assistant to the Mayor and rushing around fogerishly with appointments, golf, cocktail parties and conferences, hurried Martinis in the Brown Hotel and all that; to fatten before his time and get ulcers and go mad in recognized sanity. “No” I said “I think Neal is all right. One of these days he’ll go up in a tongue of flame and something’ll happen.” I was having good times with the Denver kids and lounging around and getting ready to go to Mexico when suddenly Brierly called me one night and said “Well Jack, guess who’s coming to Denver?” I had no idea. “He’s on his way already, I got this news from my grapevine. Neal bought a car and is coming out to join you.” Suddenly I had a vision of Neal, a burning shuddering frightful Angel palpitating towards me across the road, approaching like a cloud, with enormous speed, pursuing me like the shrouded stranger on the plain, bearing down on me. I saw his huge face over the plains with the mad bony purpose and the gleaming eyes; I saw his wings; I saw his old jalopy chariot with thousands of sparking flames shooting out from it; I saw the path it burned over the road; it even made its own road and went over the corn, through cities, destroying bridges, drying rivers. It came like wrath to the West. I knew Neal had gone mad again. There was no chance of sending money to either wife if he took all his savings out of the bank and bought a car. Everything was up, the jig and all. Behind him charred ruins smoked. He rushed westward over the awful and groaning continent again and soon he would arrive. We made hasty preparations for Neal. News was that he was going to drive me to Mexico. “Do you think he’ll let me come along?” asked Jeff in awe. “I’ll talk to him” I said grimly. We didn’t know what to expect. “Where will he sleep? What’s he going to eat? Are there any girls for him?” It was like the

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