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TARZAN Memories and Blakesian dream by Larry Lingeman scroll 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MillValleyLit

HOME | THE LITERARY LATTÉ | ON MY NIGHTSTAND | LITERARY REVIEW & EVENTS | SALON - INTERVIEWS, Submission, Contact Staff

GALLERY & The STACKS - Back Issues

GALLERY Summer 2013

NOTE STACKS\BACK ISSUES HAVE BEEN RELOCATED

Art, Special Work

RIP: JON WELLS writer

Jon at inaugural Pints & Prose - Peri's Bar 4\2010 (Fairfax, CA)

Jon Wells was the epitome of a soldier and a gentle man—not the oxymoron it may seem at first. During the Vietnam era, his attempt to volunteer for the Peace Corps ended with his enlistment in the Marine Corps. That introduction to irony would later be put to good use when Jon became a writing student of the late Stephanie Moore. Under her mentorship, he crafted his novel about the Vietnam War—from both sides of the firing line. He Died All Day Long tells the story of a single day of combat from the perspectives of both the American soldiers and their insurgent Vietnamese antagonists. Jon put the finishing touches on his book and got it to press just a few days before he died of inoperable cancer on May 25, 2013.

Jon was also an extraordinary athlete—an accomplished mountaineer, whitewater kayaker, skier, and cross-country runner. Post 9/11, he volunteered again for military service—in his mid-fifties—and helped train California National Guard reservists for combat duty in Iraq. He was very proud that every single one of his troops came home in one piece.

But Jon’s greatest joys in life were Evelyn—his wife of 15 years—and her son, Alex, whom he had to grudgingly admit was a better skier than him.

Professionally, Jon was a graphic designer, filmmaker, and brand marketing strategist with Hal King Associates in Sausalito. He was also one of the Tuesday Night Writers—a core group of Stephanie Moore’s former students—and a contributor to the Pints & Prose reading series in Fairfax, Why There Are Words in Sausalito, and Litquake’s Words on the Waves. Ironically, Jon began all his readings with the caveat: “This probably sucks.”

It never did.

by Tom Joyce on behalf of Susanna Solomon, John Phillip, Cyndi Cady, Glen David Gold, Molly Giles and the rest of the gang

Editor's note: Jon had planned his book launch party for Tuesday, June 11. The group carried out his wishes. On that special night at Peri's, the Tuesday Night Writers and friends Glen David Gold and Molly Giles presented readings from Jon's book. His success and his life were celebrated with lots of memories shared.

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Warbirds by Lucretia

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famous4 In honor of the Summer Issue, we are offering discount on select merchandise when you mention MillValleyLit.
Happy Summer! - from Larry the "Hat" and the Famous 4 Team.
96 Throckmorton, Mill Valley

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Life Imitates Art
LA Confidential Story

A struggling writer, needing work, is invited to live in and oversee a decaying LA hilltop mansion. The hundred year old four acre property belongs to the estate of an internationally known celebrity, whose talent shined in dozens of silent movies. The sprawling mansion’s Ballroom\Theatre still projects flickering images on a silver screen, like ghosts from the glorious glamour days of Hollywood.

Strange goings-on and unexplained incidents heighten the writer’s imagination. Was that a lion’s roar, or a recently deceased pet chimpanzee’s other-worldly scream? The dark nights become emotionally unmanageable. The writer survives a bizarre near-death experience with a flying chain. The writer feels trapped and compelled to get out of the strange old mansion. He finds his car transmission immobilized. The tow truck breaks down in the driveway. A third truck arrives, which strikes a large boulder, ripping through the fuel tank.

The abandoned leaf strewn pool beckons.

No, this tale did not become Billy Wilder’s screenplay for the classic Sunset Boulevard. The narrator is not William Holden’s character, Joe. This tale is the real-life adventure of Larry Lingeman, Mill Valley teacher, writer and lyricist. This tale needs to be revealed. The writer is inspired to write.

 

Tarzana Ranch
by Larry Lingeman

In the spring of 2004 I was fortunate enough to spend eight days at the historic Tarzana Ranch.
 
Danton Burroughs, director of Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. and grandson of famed author Edgar Rice Burroughs, enlisted me to oversee the property as it was prepared for sale. As a former teacher and aspiring writer, I was thrilled.
 
Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote over ninety books, despite beginning his professional writing career at age thirty-six. His imagination knew little boundary and his creative view of worlds (other than Earth) seemed to pave the way for other science-fiction writers. He will, of course, be forever closely associated with his creation of one of the most recognized literary characters – Tarzan of the Apes.

 
Once part of a 550-acre estate, the remaining portion of the ranch now sits atop a small hill overlooking the vast San Fernando Valley. The stately two story ranch house, which was formerly the writing quarters and theater room of Edgar Rice Burroughs, is surrounded by immense pines and other varieties of beautiful trees.

For a writer, the setting could not have been more perfect. On one particularly quiet and still evening, the rich history and palpable folklore inspired me to write this poem:

 

Ode to Tarzana
Within its walls his spirit dwells,
A grand adventure its story tells
Of days before in splendid lore with
Faint but chilling screams, of those who dare
Amid his lair to question their own dreams
 
The foreboding grounds behest the sounds
of creatures both great and small.
It seems to be the rest you’ll see as night begins to fall.
 
The shimmering eyes above the skies bring
Comfort on evenings clear, for tales are told
Of Martian souls both living far and near.
The tangled branches overhead swaying gently in the breeze,
illuminate the Planet Red for those beneath their leaves.
 
The sound of footsteps quiet descent into the historic room,
eerily remind of tribal drums pounding out impending doom.
Imagination running wild from the ceilings to the floor

and with each opening of the iron gates, the fateful Lion’s roar.

L. R. Lingeman 

 

As Time Slips Away

No time for tomorrow
Time for today
Buy, beg or borrow
Time slips away
Tomorrow comes quickly
Tomorrow’s today
Tomorrow’s not certain
And time slips away
and time slips away
Cry out from the mountain
Cry out to the sea
Through chilling black waters
I burn and I bleed
And I wait and I wonder
And I fall day by day
I wait and I’ll worry
As time slips away
As time slips away
Return to the memories
And turn out the light
through shining blue waters
I’ll learn and I’ll fight
And I wait and I whisper
And I’ll feel for today
I’ll wait and I’ll wander
As time slips away
As time slips away
Ride out in the sunset
For all eyes to see
through crystal clear water
To darkness will lead
And I wait and I’m wishing
For all lives today
I wait and I wonder
As time slips away
As time slips away

Written by L. R. Lingeman

 

Tribute on the passing of Edgar Rice Burrough’s grandson:

It’s been nearly six months since the passing of Danton Burroughs. That day, we lost a kind and generous man that left behind family and friends that were all better to have known him. I was at work when I received a phone call from a mutual friend, Alexandre Cornelious. Alex had been working as Danton’s attorney and like most who met Danton, the two became friends. Danton and I were introduced in 2004 at Tarzana Ranch. We became fast friends and we shared a love of art and literature, as well as an interest in collectables.

As a child I was obsessed with Tarzan and the animals of Africa. Meeting Danton and listening to his Family stories told with the youthful exuberance he possessed was an absolute pleasure. During the next several years when visiting Danton we would chat over dinner and drinks about future possibilities for ERB Inc. Danton always encouraged me to continue writing even when nothing seemed to be selling. I reflect now on the times when his firm handshake and effortless smile would give way to fatherly advice and sage wisdom. So I say to you now, Danton, thank you and God speed my friend. This one’s for you.

Regards, Larry Lingeman

Editor's note: We found Larry's following poem to be Blakesque:


Autumn Moon

Silently, the morning light
finding width among the shadows,
befalls the open spaces green
above the winding meadows.
The final drop of darkness dries
amidst the bleeding rays,
forever to hide within the light
of all the blinding days.
The deathly glow of daytimes’ rest
shall rear its beastly head,
To veil the evening’s sweet refrain
from which we shall be lead.
The comfort lies within our grasp
to shield the pains beset,
for yonder waits the autumn moon
of peace and no regret.


-Written by L. R. Lingeman

Additional Burroughs cover art and Tarzan notes from press clippings: scroll all the way down

TARZAN NOTES:

Burroughs estate photos: Larry Lingeman

 

The Indefinitve TARZAN TIMELINE:

Tarzan of the Apes published: 1914 (published in magazine 1912)

First Tarzan movie: 1918 (88 more up to 2008) Many TV shows and derivatives. 2nd only to Dracula in film adaptations.

Tarzan of Harlem - song by Cab Calloway live from the Cotton Club 1939

The last true ERB Tarzan book appeared in 1965

Similar to "Searching for Sugarman" Tarzan enjoyed unauthorized and unrenumerated success in a foreign land - in this case Israel, in the 50s and 60s

Disney Tarzan movie – 1999

Disney sequel - Tarzan and Jane – 2002

folowing from old press clippings:

Sergio Trujillo, who was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for his choreography for Jersey Boys, is currently in Amsterdam working on the European debut of Disney's Tarzan.  Tarzan, as previously reported, should open April 15 (2008?) at the Circustheatre near Amsterdam.

Phil Collins, who expanded his film score for the stage production, Tarzan.
Disney's 'Tarzan' closes its doors in N.Y. 
Variety ~ June 23, 2007 
Disney Theatrical Productions' "Tarzan" has posted a closing notice for July 8 to end its fairly short run on Broadway in New York. The show, which opened in May 2006 to mixed reviews and featured music from Phil Collins, never built the sales momentum that made "The Lion King" and "Mary Poppins" so successful

Tarzan Swings Out of Richard Rodgers Theatre NY
Playbill ~ July 8, 2007
 In a recent statement Disney Theatrical producer Thomas Schumacher said, "I am disappointed that the Broadway production of Tarzan will close earlier than any of us had hoped, and I would have loved for it to have been as successful in New York as it is now in Holland. Despite this, Tarzan was the Broadway debut for two artists I have long admired and respected, and for this I am extremely proud. The opportunity to work again with the legendary Phil Collins, who expanded his film score for the stage production, and with Bob Crowley in his Broadway directorial debut has been hugely gratifying. I know that as we continue to produce Tarzan around the world, audiences will embrace it with as much enthusiasm as we put into creating it."
The first European production of Tarzan officially opened in Holland at the Circustheatre near Amsterdam April 15.

Today the first editions, and even separately, the beautifully illustrated jackets, are collector's items. Tarzan of the Apes at $55,000, available through abebooks.com, is the highest price asked currently.

HOME | THE LITERARY LATTÉ | ON MY NIGHTSTAND | LITERARY REVIEW & EVENTS | SALON - INTERVIEWS, Submission, Contact Staff

GALLERY & The STACKS - Back Issues

 

Burroughs book covers: J. Macon King library

Wells photo: courtesy Cyndi Cady

Ariel estate photo, original Tarzan cover: courtesy Bill & Sue-on Hillman's ERBzine

 

All uncredited photos: J. Macon King

All writing, submissions, and comments are the views of the respective authors and interviewees do not necessarily reflect the views of MillValleyLit or Editorial staff.