Stopped and watched the wind ripple across a black billboard. Talk about the black letters of the word "hi" in the field in Colorado, that it should be the first chapter of the memoir.
(When I was 19 I was reading Walter Pater's novel "Marius the Epicurean" and a lot of T.S. Eliot, and I wrote what can only be described as an abysmal effort, a poem called "Marius Comes to the Dry Places," in which a sensitive young man, who may or may not be living in the late phases of the Roman empire, broods about the sterility of modern life. Anyone who does not believe there is such a thing as bad poetry has not seen this. A year later, in a move just about as melodramatic and self-regarding as the writing of the poem, I burnt the thing. Then I put on my headphones and played a cassette of The Smiths on my Walkman while stalking around the streets of suburban Winnipeg. You know, like Lord Byron would have done, if he had been a punk-ass bitch in Canada)