Letter: Remembering Pres Pulliam’s poetic soul

I was a latecomer to Preston Pulliam’s circle of friends, and the friendship we formed was a great joy and addition to my life in Rappahannock. Among his many charming attributes, including being a Virginia Gentleman par excellence, was his poetic soul that he shared with me a year ago. It took the form of a little volume he presented at the Library of Congress in 2008: “And Quietly Flows the Hazel.”

Pres Pulliam
Pres Pulliam

His poetry reflects the man, of course — witty, provocative, wise, colorful, reflective and deeply rooted in his sense of place. As Pres had so many admirers and his life so rich, I would like to propose a Rappahannock-centric Pres Pulliam Remembrance event, at a time and place to be determined. Those who knew and loved him can read his poetry, tell stories and talk about his influence on their lives (within agreed-upon time limits). For those who didn’t know him but are interested in the county, in the spirit of a man of many parts who survived the tornado of 1933, had tea with a Kamakazi pilot in Japan and broke the code for selling insurance to WWII veterans, this event could be a “rich experience.”

There is a gathering at 5 p.m. Saturday (Sept. 6) at which friends and family are invited to celebrate Pres Pulliam’s life at the Black Horse Tavern near Warrenton.

All who would like to participate in a Rappahannock remembrance should email Jan Clatterbuck at the newspaper within the next two weeks; she will coordinate with his daughters, if the numbers are significant, and make arrangements for such an event. (Jan’s email address is jan@rappnews.com.)

John Kiser
Slate Mills

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