The photos below are from 1991, at Owl Farm, where I visited Hunter for a week, not having seen him in twenty-one years physically. I had been living in Morocco and then Belgium. My boyfriend had just died and the apartment we had shared was spooky. I thought Hunter could handle the “weirdness,” and I certainly need a confidante. So I reached out by phone and pretty soon was at Owl Farm, his ranch in Colorado. This sets the stage as Keep This Quiet! IV, revised edition, opens:
On January 6, 1991 (preceded by uncanny warnings), [Willy Van Luyten] died in a car crash. Having spoken to Hunter by phone in the U.S. a year earlier, I phoned him (among others) after the death.
Thrown off balance—but excited—by the energy beginning to permeate the apartment Willy and I had shared, I felt the need to reach out to an old friend, though I had close female friends in a weekly “Inner Landscaping” course in self-development in Brussels and in a mystical Tai Chi course in Leuven. But I wanted someone with a longer view of me, who wouldn’t laugh outright at the fact that since Willy’s death I had a nonphysical bell sounding in my 8 Keep This Quiet! IV
apartment in response to thoughts. Who could I call? Someone who took “weirdness” in stride? Hunter. Not that I told him right away about the bell or even about Willy, but I broached the topic of psychic experiences and he listened. At least, he didn’t dismiss them outright, but said he preferred the word “intuition.”
After numerous long calls January–April 1991, we found a window of opportunity to meet. It latched onto feelings never lost. We both felt the old tie that had never broken stirred up. However, think about the unknown territory we had to cross
now. Hunter did not know me as a mystic. He had only a clue or two about what was going on in my apartment—about which the reader will get more input coming right up. I did not know the extent of his increased drug use. It didn’t matter. We knew something more basic, which held on despite these important things that should have driven us apart. Would it, when we met?
To prepare me, he mailed three photos of himself, along with correspondence with Don Henley. Henley, singer/ drummer/songwriter of the Eagles (“Hotel California”), owned property close by in Woody Creek; he’d just invited Hunter to contribute an essay to a fund-raising book in support of the developer-threatened woods in which Henry David Thoreau’s Walden Pond was located. Hunter enclosed the back-and-forth. A fax cover sheet said his proposed contribution was “A Death in the Family”—about “the hideous death in life of a red fox.” Though dated 1986 in the anthology Generation of Swine, the real date was April 26, 1991. Knowing Hunter’s disdain for developers, wouldn’t you think he’d help Walden Pond out? But his sense of humor kicked in. Would I see the fun or be horrified? Sending me the correspondence was a test.