“The child plays
The toy boat sails across the pond
The work has now just begun
Oh child, look what you have done”
I found my words I wrote long ago in Rosemary’s treasure box wherein she stored the snippets of her children’s dreams, their little rewards for their accomplishments.
Across the pond is a euphemism for across the Atlantic to Britain. Rena Victoria went across the pond after she married Sir Ian Easton who helped put ‘The White Crusader’ in the American Cup. That is the Crusader in the photo above, and below is a video of Crusader against ‘Stars and Stripes’.
My painting that toured 36 nations when I was twelve, was inspired by the beautiful watercolors of Winslow Homer, especially the one we see above. It was not copied. I did my watercolor from scratch – with Homer’s image in mind.
Above are photos of my sailboat I lived on in the Oakland estuary where the author Jack London sailed boats when he was a young man. I never owned sails for my boat, so I never sailed it. I was docked in a small boatyard surrounded by freighters and the SP train yard. If you walked to the end of the pier, you could see the city of San Francisco floating in the bay like the risen Atlantis. Then, here come the big ships.
This was one of the most magical views in the Bay Area. I could get a hot shower nearby, where truckers took their showers after a long haul. I lived here in a houseboat with Sue Viliani in 1969. I drove a 1942 Ford Super Deluxe that Sue bought. When her parents committed her to Camarillo State Mental hospital, I was all alone. When I saw my boat half sunk with rain-water, I bought it for $200 dollars. This boat is my Penistone Crag from the movie Wuthering Heights written by one of the Bronte Sisters. They were unwed spinsters, who based their great novels on the drunken escapades of their brother – a utter nobody! Was he their Muse?
When Rosamond’s Fame did not fade as she predicted, and when her promoters wanted her real life-story, my sister began to retreat from the truth because she enjoyed the attention and the wealth she now had. In many respects we were like Cathy and Heathcliff, who was a gypsy, thus Bohemian, boy. He is left behind, pushed out of Cathy’s life. He get’s no credit for making Cathy who she is, a world-class lover and spender. Cathy is an Archetype – on both shores!
And now you begin to see the nature of the trap I have set for Rena Victoria. This poor Bohemian artist, poet, and writer, gets the last word! I hold the pen. And, the pen writes as the boat sails across the pond. Oh Jon Gregory, look what you have done!
Rena was reading Jane Eyre when we met. She is of the Bronte Mind. She sees the box, the stick, and the long string. Rena is not stupid. She moves in the fog, on little cat feet – fearing romantic revenge! Come, my dear, and step into my Soap Box!
Rosamond’s biographers keep dancing around this question; “Why did she paint women? Was – is she a lesbian?”
Each time this question was asked, the further I was moved to the Wurthering Depths – because I was surrounded by Beautiful Women – and we made Love! We did much more the look into a mirror. We tackled real problems together – heterosexual problems! We were -for real!
When I was sixteen, and Marilyn fifteen I asked if I could watch her put on her make-up. I was in heaven for a half hour or more as she moved a make-up brush all over her beautiful face. When she was done, I asked her if I could bite her nose.
“Why do you want to do that?” she asked.
“Because it so beautifully perfect, I am bid to do more then look at it.’
Marilyn let me take her nose in my teeth, and I gave her a very loving, and very soft, bite!
Rena knows what I am about. I am ripping off my sister’s – mask – to expose…….?
The top photo is Rosemary’s Creation. She posed her children all the time, she forever having a Heathcliff Moment, she ruing the day she married our father, forever waiting for the Gypsy Boy to appear.
So here we sit on Penistone Crag that is a hop-skip-and-jump from Miller’s Hight.
Note the drawing board with two pieces of drawing paper on my bunk. Could it be? I had developed an artist block after my first Muse left me for a twenty-four year old German Jet-setter who owned a T-Bird.
When I saw the movie ‘The Empty Canvas’. I understood there was a common palette amongst those who create, and is a Gregori unto us. There is no time when you are using this palette. No future. No past.
There is no here, and there is no there. A rose is a rose!
What was coming across the pond that struck down my generation, were erotic foreign movies. I took Marilyn to see Wurthering Heights, and she took me to see ‘Phaedra’. These movies were more powerful then LSD. They introduced the ‘Afterglow’. We all wanted some of this!
When Rena took me into to the Art Museum, she knew the routine. How did she know? Phaedra met her new son-in-law in a Museum. My Muse left me with a eternal afterglow that shine like a beacon on Penistone Crag. Art Movies were a big turn-on. Haven’t seen a good one in a coon’s age!
My little boat has been all over the world. Can we say the same thing about the ‘White Crusader’?
The King of Muses
The deadline for acceptance of challenges was 1 April 1986 and Admiral Sir Ian Easton wrote his own personal cheque for $16,000 as an entry fee deposit. Harold Cudmore acted as skipper-tactician and starting helmsman who then handed over the helm to Chris Law for the remainder of each races. Both boats were originally named simply Crusader One and Two but the “White” part of their names were added when millionaire Graham Walker (Of White Horse whiskey fame) gave heavy sponsorship to the British challengers at the last minute before the event started so the “White” was added to their names.
He was the main instigator of the British challenge for the 1987 America’s Cup in Fremantle, Australia. He persuaded Admiral Sir Ian Easton to use his contacts at British Aerospace to raise the required deposit at the eleventh hour, without which there would have been no challenge.”
Wuthering Heights is a novel by Emily Brontë, written between October 1845 and June 1846, and published in 1847 under the pseudonym Ellis Bell. It was her first and only published novel: she died aged 30 the following year. The decision to publish came after the success of her sister Charlotte’s novel, Jane Eyre. After Emily’s death, Charlotte edited the manuscript of Wuthering Heights, and arranged for the edited version to be published as a posthumous second edition in 1850.
Wuthering Heights is the eponymous farmhouse on the Yorkshire moors where the story unfolds. The book’s core theme is the destructive effect that jealousy and vengefulness have, both on the jealous or vengeful individuals and on their communities.
Thirty years earlier, Wuthering Heights was occupied by Mr Earnshaw, his teenage son Hindley, and his daughter Catherine. On a trip to Liverpool, Earnshaw encountered a homeless boy described as “dark-skinned gypsy in aspect”. He adopted the boy and named him Heathcliff. Hindley felt Heathcliff supplanted him in his father’s affections and became bitterly jealous. Catherine and Heathcliff became friends and spent hours each day playing on the moors. They grew too close and hated every moment they were apart.
Mediocre artist Dino is obsessed with young model Cecilia and distraught that she shares her sexual favors not only with him but with actor Luciani as well. In an effort to derail her plan to vacation in Capri with his rival, Dino proposes marriage, and when she rejects his offer he invites Cecilia to join him at the Rome estate of his domineering mother, a wealthy American, in the hope that he can seduce her with his glamorous lifestyle. Despairing that he will never have a monogamous relationship with her, he crashes his sportscar into a wall. While recovering in the hospital, he realizes his feelings will never be reciprocated. When Cecilia returns from her trip assuming their liaison will continue, Dino announces the affair is over.