I am superstitious. I knock on wood. I turn over a Tarot card after shuffling the deck seven times and cutting to the left with my left hand: The Moon. The traditional Western interpretation is “danger, deception, hidden forces at work.” The moon reflects the light of the sun—therefore, a card of introspection. The rays of the moon symbolize my desire—here, to delineate my Selfhood—the hounds warn me of the peril. But all will be well, I’m told, the dangers illusory, if I realize my Mind mirrors the Great Perfection. Good luck! I will need another self to describe the first self and another self to describe that self ad infinitum to discover myself—figments and flotsam in an ocean where I’m dissolving like a salt-doll. I close my eyes. I hold my breath. A door swings open. A Richard steps out and bows.

 Richard Denner is a middle-aged male living in the State of Anxiety, working with a white heat intensity that keeps him slightly burnt around the edges and most of his connections shorted. Cowboy, treeplanter, printer, bookseller, he is adjusting to his role as an elder.

  Richard Denner—is this the same Richard Denner who invented the clarinet? No, that was Johann Christoph Denner. Known to sound off in a reedy fashion, Richard was raised in Berkeley and Oakland, California, but after the fairytale 60s, he lived for many years in Alaska and Washington state. Proprietor of Four Winds Bookstore and Café in Ellensburg, Washington, he turned this institution over to his son and then connected with Tara Mandala, a Tibetan Buddhist Retreat Center in Colorado, until he was called back to the Bay Area to care for his elderly parents. He publishes chapbooks under the dPress logo and has an ideal job teaching poetry, collage and Tarot at a Waldorf School within walking distance of his family home near Sebastopol, California.

  Richard Denner was uneducated in Berkeley, California, during the 60s, self-exiled into the Alaskan woods, printing on a 1927 Kesey hand press small, smudgy chapbooks, graduating from University of Alaska, Fairbanks, 1972, continued printing while working at Queen Anne News in Seattle, moved with family to 800 acre cattle ranch east of Ellensburg, Washington, to punch cows and write hayseed verses, finally finding a career as the proprietor of Four Winds Bookstore & Café, settling down to civic responsibilities, Masonic Order, alcoholism and a total freak-out after separating from the most beautiful woman in the world, finding happiness in the teachings of Buddha, 1989, moving to Tara Mandala Retreat Center in Colorado to manage another bookstore and do a long retreat until called back to California in 1998 to care for his elderly parents, staying on after his father’s death to write and publish D Press chapbooks. Richard has completed training to be a California Poet in the Schools, and he has been ordained as a Tibetan Buddhist monk.



1941 Born, Santa Clara County Hospital, California—adopted by Mr. & Mrs. S. G. Denner—1941-42 Colgate Street, Berkeley, California—his dad was appointed Assistant State Director of State Farm Insurance, and the regional office was in Berkeley—1942-44 Catalina Street, Berkeley—because his dad was of draft age, parents moved closer to a day care in case his mom had to work—1944-48 Arlington Avenue, Kensington, California—his sister, Lynda, adopted; moved because his parents needed a house with three bedrooms—1948-57 Robinson Drive, Oakland, California—his dad appointed State Director, bigger house with horse stables—1957-59 Rubin Drive, Oakland—custom-built house, smaller house since kids were leaving for college—1959 Montgomery Street, Albany, California—his first apartment, but he promises his dad he will live in student housing the following semester—1960 Gilman Hall, Haste Street, Berkeley—new dormitory, he shares a room on the 4th floor—1960-61 LeRoy Street, Berkeley—sleeping over with Pat, who becomes his first wife—1961 McGee Street, Berkeley—his and Pat’s apartment after their marriage in High Street Presbyterian Church, Kirsten Erica is born at Alta Bates Hospital—1962-63 Sea Cliff Drive, Aptos, California—beach house belonging to his parents, he attends Cabrillo College, then in Watsonville—1963 Island Park, New York—separated from Pat, he flees to New York and stays with Jon Springer—1963-64 Long Beach, New York—he moves with Pat, pregnant with Gina, and Kirsten to the East Coast—1964 52nd Street, Oakland, California—after their return from New York, Regina Gabriella is born at Kaiser Hospital—1964 College Avenue, Oakland, California—he separates from Pat and stays with Ardi Davaran—1964 Santa Cruz Avenue, Santa Cruz, California—he returns to Santa Cruz and stays with Steve Desmond—1964 Derby Street, Berkeley—he reunites with Pat and they put together a new pad—1964 Bancroft Way, Berkeley—he moves out and takes a room in a boarding house—1964 Haste Street, Berkeley—house sitting while Notes from the Underground are on tour—1964 Blake Street, Berkeley—he lives in a converted coal bin—1964 Napa State Mental Institution, Imola, California—three months observation on D Ward—1964 Oak Tree Drive, Santa Rosa, California—trying to get grounded, he runs his finger down a lists of schools and stops at Cal Poly—1964-65 Lemon Street, San Luis Obispo, California—he takes a room in a boarding house—1965 Law Apartments, San Luis Obispo—sharing a cabin with Buddy Collins—1965 Channing Way, Berkeley—sharing a carriage house with Pat Gord—1965 College Avenue, Berkeley—he stays with Luis Garcia—1966 New York Hotel, Ketchikan, Alaska—first trip to Alaska, where he meets Cheri Bader—1966 Channing Way, Berkeley—they share an apartment with Wesley Tanner—1966-67 Ward Street, Berkeley—they share an apartment with Jim Whelage and Alice—1968 South Tongass Avenue, Ketchikan, Alaska—they stay with Cheri’s folks until he finds work—1968 Park Avenue, Ketchikan—Theodore Dylan is born at Saint Mary’s Hospital—1968-1970 Rollog Cabin, Deep Bay, Alaska—mid-winter they move to a cabin twenty-five miles from Ketchikan by boat—1970 up the Al-Can to Fairbanks by VW Bus—they spend the summer in the VW—1970-72 University of Alaska, College, Alaska—student housing, Cheri works as receptionist at the SUB—1972-73 311PLSE & SE85PL, Preston, Washington—they move into a mill house along Raging River next to Cheri’s parents—1973-75 4th Parallel Road, Badger Pocket, Washington—he hires on as the foreman of an 800 acre cattle ranch—1975 Manila Street, Oakland, California—living in the Red Light District, he sets type on The Scorpion at Aríf Press—1976-78 Pfenning Road, Ellensburg, Washington—while Cheri visits Sweden with her parents, he rents a ramshackle house next to a graveyard—1978-79 North Anderson, Ellensburg—they buy a Farm Home, built in the 1920s—1980 East Fourth  Street, Ellensburg—he and Cheri separate, he crashing at the Four Winds Bookstore—1980-81 South Pearl Street, Ellensburg—fixing up a garage at Jan Mejer’s house—1981-83 North Pearl Street, Ellensburg—he moves in with Alia, Lucienne Dorrance delivered in their bedroom with the help of Roberto Freeman—1983-84 South Anderson, Ellensburg—they buy and remodel a Farm Home house—1984-85 East Fifth Street, Ellensburg—he separates from Alia and finds a bungalow—1985-87 Seattle Street, Ellensburg—he moves in with Beryl and her two kids—1988 South Pine Street, Ellensburg—he and Beryl separate, and he finds an old hobo house—1989-1996 East Capitol, Ellensburg—he buys and remodels a Farm Home house—1996 Cook Canyon, Archeluta County, Colorado—he camps out on Tara Mandala’s land—1996-1997 Apache & Oxford Streets, Archeluta County—he lives in a bunkhouse on a small horse ranch—1997-98 Fifth Avenue, Pagosa Springs, Colorado—care-taking Doug Erikson’s house while he is in Viet Nam—1998 to present—Oak Tree Drive, Santa Rosa, California—returns to the Bay Area to assist his elderly parents



1946 Thousand Oaks Day School, Berkeley, California—1946-49 Kensington Elementary School, Kensington, California—1949-1954 Sequoia Elementary School, Oakland, California—1954-56 Bret Harte Junior High School, Oakland—1956-59 Oakland High School, Oakland—1959-60 University of California, Berkeley—1962-63 Merritt College, Oakland—1962-63 Cabrillo College, Watsonville, California—1964-65 California Polytechnic College, San Luis Obispo, California—1970-72 University of Alaska, College, Alaska—Bachelor of Arts, major in English & minor in Philosophy—2001 California Poets in the Schools training, Sonoma County, California



1955 Oakland Juvenile Hall, Oakland, California—evading arrest and destruction of city property—suspension of driver’s license and financial restitution—1956 Oakland Juvenile Hall—theft, auto—return of stolen hubcaps and one year probation—1960 Berkeley City Jail—disturbing the peace, destruction of state property—case dismissed—1963 Berkeley City Jail—petty theft—one year probation—1964 Berkeley City Jail—indecent exposure and possession of marijuana—1964 Alameda County Jail, Oakland—held two weeks until judged insane, committed to State Mental Facility for ninety days—1964 Alameda County Jail—held until judged sane—1975 Ellensburg City Jail, Ellensburg, Washington—disturbing the peace—charges dropped


1955 Montclair Methodist, Oakland, California—1957 High Street Presbyterian, Oakland—baptism into Christian Faith—1957 Oakland De Molay, Oakland—completed Second Degree—1958 Universal Life Church Ministry, Deep Bay, Alaska—1985 Free & Accepted Masons, Ellensburg Lodge #39, Washington—Past Worshipful Master—1990 Tibetan Buddhism—refuge with Tsultrim Allione—Seabeck, Washington 2005—ordained as a Nyingma monk by Adzom Paylo Rinpoche at Tara Mandala Retreat Center, Pagosa Springs, Colorado



1964 Herrick Memorial Hospital Mental Ward, Berkeley, California—ten days observation to receive doctors’ reports—1964 Napa State Mental Hospital, Imola, California—committed for three months on a close ward —1966 Mendocino State Mental Hospital, Mendocino, California—self-commitment for drug re-hab—1967 Herrick Memorial Hospital—self-commitment, out-patient



1955 Tobacco, Oakland, California—started with Lucky Strikes, later discovered Gaulosis, but finally settled on Camel straights—1957 Alcohol, Oakland—started with straight Scotch, Cutty Sark—had many mellow years drinking wine, ended his drinking career with gin & tonics—1958 Dexedrine, Oakland—mother’s little helpers—1959 Espresso coffee at the Mediterranean Café, Berkeley— “Oh, and make that a doppio if you would.”—1963 Marijuana, Island Park, New York— “I was definitely a pot head, and I would have sprinkled it on my breakfast food if I could have afforded it.”—1963 Nutmeg, Aptos, California—1963 Codeine, Aptos—Robitussin AC—1964 Peyote, Berkeley—patterns within, patterns without—1964 LSD, Big Sur, California— “Do you have any more of that ‘Windowpane’?”—1967 Mescaline mixed into Red Mountain, Berkeley—1967 Opium, Berkeley—1967 Amyl Nitrate, Ketchikan, Alaska—1969 STP, Deep Bay, Alaska—1971 Cocaine, College, Alaska—1972 Psilosybin, Preston, Washington—remembers his birth—1988 Last acid trip along the Yakima River in Ellensburg, Washington—1988 stopped drinking alcohol and smoking pot in Ellensburg—1995 stopped drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes in Pagosa Springs, Colorado—2001 still drinks tea, he being especially fond of the smoky flavor of Lapsang Souchong, which smells a little like boot polish 2003 Lupron for prostate, try this it's like being on menopause


1955-56 Mrs. Graham’s Riding Academy, Oakland, California—stable boy—1956-57 Skyline Stables, Oakland—stable boy, trainer’s assistant—1955-59 S-D Ranch, Willits and Red Buff, California—ranch hand—1961 State Farm Insurance, Berkeley, California—bindery clerk—1962 Sticky Wicket Restaurant, Aptos, California—waiter and stage manager—1962 Kirby Vacuum Cleaner Company, Long Beach, New York—salesman—1963 Seventh Day Adventist Furniture Company, Aptos—drill press operator—1963 Able I Furniture, Berkeley—delivery man—1963 Norsco Furniture, Albany, California—shipping clerk—1963 Cinema/Guild Theaters, Berkeley—marquis changer—1964 Del Monte Cannery, Oakland—relief man—1964 Del Monte Cannery, Emeryville, California—quantitative analysis of ketchup—1964 Western One Stops, Emeryville—stock clerk at record warehouse—1965 Idea Research & Development Company, Santa Rosa, California—shipping clerk, sending out packets for TV Bingo—1965 Berkeley Barb, Berkeley—reporter—1966 Georgia-Pacific Logging Company, Ketchikan, Alaska—choker setter and water chaser—1966 Ketchikan Cold Storage, Ketchikan—freezer monkey—1966 Sikura Enterprises, Berkeley—house painter—1966-67 Moe’s Bookstore, Berkeley—clerk/buyer—1967 State of California—Aid to the Totally Disabled—inertia—1967 Ketchikan Cold Storage, Ketchikan—packing line, ice room, storage, freezers—1967-68 Ketchikan Daily News, Ketchikan—weekly columnist and backshop: layout, dark room & web press assistant—1968-70 Living in the deep woods in Tongass National Forest—applying How To Live in the Woods on $10/Week—1970-72 Polar Star Newspaper, College, Alaska—backshop foreman—1971 R & M Geology, Fairbanks, Alaska—sinking test holes in search of bedrock for Trans-Alaskan Pipeline—1972 University of Alaska Student Activities, College—physical services—1972-73 Queen Anne News, Seattle, Washington—backshop: layout and graphic design—1973-1975 Diamond Hanging J I Ranch, Badger Pocket, Washington—caretaker: irrigation, maintenance, ride the fences, feed  the stock in winter—1975 Square Deal Andy’s Garage, Oakland, California—painting and custodial, assists installing spare gas tanks—1976-77 Gold Leaf Convalescent Home, Ellensburg, Washington—maintenance supervisor—1977-1995 Four Winds Bookstore and Café, Ellensburg—owner and operator—1977-1986 Eastern Washington Reforestation, Ellensburg—tree planter—1980 Twin Foods, Inc., Ellensburg—erection of metal storage building—1987-1991 T.G.T.B.T., Ellensburg—tree planter—1985 Valley Café, Ellensburg—dishwasher—1988-89 Valley Café, Ellensburg—construction of Valley Deli with Chris Shambacher—1996-98 Tara Mandala Bookstore, Pagosa Springs, Colorado—manager, monitor travelling Dakini Store, develop catalog—1998-00 caretake elderly father, Santa Rosa, California—2000 Summerhill School, Santa Rosa—poetry/collage/Tarot teacher—2000-01 Sprint Copy Shop, Sebastopol, California—consultant2002-03 Carpentry on Jenkel land



1949 Juanita Miller, drama coach, Oakland California—plays at Juaquin Miller Ampitheater—1950-52 Cub Scouts, Oakland—Pack 98, Wolves—1950-54 Berkeley, California—piano and dance lessons—1954-56 YMCA, Berkeley—Camp Gawalla, Blue Ragger—1955 Law’s Judo, Oakland—Brown Belt—1955-57 Metropolitan Horseman’s Association, Oakland—horse shows and equestrian activities—1957-59 Oakland High School, Oakland—track and swimming teams, second string—1960 SLATE, Berkeley—debates and demonstrations—1968 founding of D Press, Ketchikan, Alaska—how much poem will fit in a 4 by 6 inch type case using 60 point Bodoni Bold?—1971 University of Alaska, College Alaska—Married Student Representative to Student Body Congress, U. of Ak. is the last University Student Body to condemn U.S. involvement in Viet Nam War—1972 State Democratic Primary on the University campus, College—students and Indians form coalition to select George McGovern the presidental candidate—1977-95 Four Winds Bookstore & Café, Ellensburg, Washington—hosting art shows, music, readings and workshops—1980-87 Ellensburg Anthology, Ellensburg—co-editor and editor and publisher—1982 Ellensburg-Nicaragua United in Friendship ENUF—debates, propaganda and demonstrations—1984-87 Ellensburg Arts & Crafts Festival—coordinator and impresario—1985-88 Community Television, Central Washington University, Ellensburg—collaboration with  Kim Secunda, Dan Herron, James Eisenberg & Sam Albright on many small videos and one feature-length, The Fertillacrome Cheerleader Massacre—1988 Kittatas County Art Gallery, Ellensburg—retrospective of his collages, junk assemblages and linoleum block prints—1994 to present, Tara Mandala, Pagosa Springs, Colorado—taking summer retreats and assisting in the establishment of Tara Mandala Retreat Center2003 writing, reading, and working on web site 2005—poet-monk, Jampa Dorje, doing his thing


 Off I go. I shed a skin. I do a quick-change act. I turn into a question mark.