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This profile was last updated on 4/1/01  and contains information from public web pages.

Mrs. Pierre Delattre

Wrong Pierre Delattre?

Beat Preacher

North Beach
 
Background

Employment History

  • Painter and Novelist and Poet and Memoirist, Author of Tales of A Dalai Lama
  • Congregational Church
8 Total References
Web References
SECTION ONE
www.blacklistedjournalist.com, 1 April 2001 [cached]
PIERRE DELATTRE(From the back cover of his book, EPISODES)
CHAPTER NINETEEN: THE MISSION
[Pierre Delattre, now living in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains between Taos and Santa Fe, is described on the back cover of the paperback edition of his Graywolf Press memoir, Episodes, as a writer, painter and teacher.I don't know if he is still a reverend.He has consistently refused to respond to my telephone calls and letters.Perhaps he didn't like what I wrote about him and his Bread and Wine Mission in San Francisco's North Beach some 40 years ago, In addition to Episodes, he has written two novels, Walking on Air and Tales of a Dalai Lama, as well as many stories and poems.In one of his Episodes, a reminiscence entitled The Last Beatnik Casualty Is Brought to My Door, he tells how the police came to him saying they had a corpse in whose pocket was found Delattre's name and address.The corpse was that of the late Neal Cassady, whose death Delattre blamed on speed.
"We had all tried to achieve enlightenment too fast," he wrote, "just as we were burning up fuel while driving too fast, wasting our resources too quickly, and ourselves getting wasted in hopes of coming face to face with the ultimate before the bomb ended it all for everyone. . . One of his girlfriends told me that he fucked like a piston for hours at a time without ever coming, then he collapsed."
In another reminiscence in Episodes, entitled Ginsberg's Blessing Keeps Me Grounded, Delattre visits the poet's messy pad to tell him about how the police had knocked on his door with news of Neal's corpse.Delattre had taken a long and arduous bus trip to get to Ginsberg, who said he was writing a book about Neal's death and wanted to know what details Delattre could report.Unwilling to return home by bus, Delattre had booked a flight and Ginsberg walked him down the stairs.
". . . I knew I'd have to run if I wanted to catch my plane," Delattre wrote.
...
"My heaviest load," Delattre says, "is counseling.
...
"Those who come," says Delattre, "represent the few remaining persons in North Beach who have any political orientation.
...
"Dr. Rigney," says Delattre, "has discovered that the personality profile of the men around here very closely parallels that of the female social worker.
...
Delattre says the most impressive thing about the rebellion in North Beach is that it is largely a failure
...
Delattre himself sometimes reads.He has been writing poetry since his childhood and his devotion to literature quite obviously approaches his devotion to the Almighty.It was his interest in the correlation of the two, in fact, which brought him to his Mission and to his upstairs flat, where he lives with his wife, their two children and his house guest.A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and of the University of Chicago Divinity School, Delattre moved to California five years ago, was ordained a minister in the
Delattre was attracted to North Beach by the same creativity that attracts others
Northern Presbyterian Church of America, and obtained a job at the University of California YMCA at Berkeley, where he helped develop a program in religion and contemporary culture.
From the beginning, he was attracted to the same creativity that makes North Beach so attractive to others and soon he evolved the idea that the church should open its own coffee house there.When he learned that the Rev. Dr. Spike of the Congregational Board of Home Missions had evolved the same idea, he was, as he says, "really kind of surprised," but not too surprised to leave the Presbyterian Church, join the Congregational, accept the Rev. Dr. Spike's offer to head the project and become the Beat Preacher of North Beach.
Except that the Rev. Delattre, despite his clear, tenor, sermon-like voice, does not preach at The Mission.It is his parishioners who preach.
"Theirs," he says of the people at The Mission, "is a profoundly religious movement, but I would say that they turn to religion in desperation.
...
When Delattre first opened The Mission, the religious fervor, on the surface at least didn't seem very profound.His first visitors included a stream of Grant Avenue habitués who entered The Mission for no other purpose than to insult Delattre, his church or his God.Sometimes Delattre would answer, "Yes, go on."Sometimes he would say, "You have a point there."Soon, of course, North Beach found that Delattre had more to offer than just religion.There was the bread and wine of The Mission's title, there was coffee at five cents a cup and then on Sunday nights, there was a meal prepared by Mrs. Delattre, a psychologist and an actress, and appropriately beautiful,
"Hmmph," said a youth, without a beard, but with all the other newspaper accoutrements of beatness, "Beans tonight!It's a bad night!"
He stood in one of two waiting queues that led from a table in the candlelit center of The
Delattre says in North Beachit's the artistsversus the beaten
Mission and snaked about chairs, metal couches and -metal columns almost to the door, There were perhaps 150 persons waiting, hungry, for the beans.At the table, filling paper plates with a huge ladle from a huge tureen, were Delattre and his wife.
...
"Hold on your plates," shouted Delattre as if sermonizing in his tenor from the pulpit."We have salad for a second course.
"Ah," said another poet, "think of all the poetry in a plateful of beans."
"The Mission," says Delattre, standing in his doorway again, "has come to be important to the community.
Pierre Delattre , ...
harwoodmuseum.org, 22 Mar 2007 [cached]
Pierre Delattre , painter/novelist/poet/memoirist, author of "Tales of a Dalai Lama," (Lost Horse Press), and "Woman on the Cross".
SECTION ONE
www.theblacklistedjournalist.com, 1 April 2001 [cached]
PIERRE DELATTRE(From the back cover of his book, EPISODES)
CHAPTER NINETEEN: THE MISSION
[Pierre Delattre, now living in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains between Taos and Santa Fe, is described on the back cover of the paperback edition of his Graywolf Press memoir, Episodes, as a writer, painter and teacher.I don't know if he is still a reverend.He has consistently refused to respond to my telephone calls and letters.Perhaps he didn't like what I wrote about him and his Bread and Wine Mission in San Francisco's North Beach some 40 years ago, In addition to Episodes, he has written two novels, Walking on Air and Tales of a Dalai Lama, as well as many stories and poems.In one of his Episodes, a reminiscence entitled The Last Beatnik Casualty Is Brought to My Door, he tells how the police came to him saying they had a corpse in whose pocket was found Delattre's name and address.The corpse was that of the late Neal Cassady, whose death Delattre blamed on speed.
"We had all tried to achieve enlightenment too fast," he wrote, "just as we were burning up fuel while driving too fast, wasting our resources too quickly, and ourselves getting wasted in hopes of coming face to face with the ultimate before the bomb ended it all for everyone. . . One of his girlfriends told me that he fucked like a piston for hours at a time without ever coming, then he collapsed."
In another reminiscence in Episodes, entitled Ginsberg's Blessing Keeps Me Grounded, Delattre visits the poet's messy pad to tell him about how the police had knocked on his door with news of Neal's corpse.Delattre had taken a long and arduous bus trip to get to Ginsberg, who said he was writing a book about Neal's death and wanted to know what details Delattre could report.Unwilling to return home by bus, Delattre had booked a flight and Ginsberg walked him down the stairs.
". . . I knew I'd have to run if I wanted to catch my plane," Delattre wrote.
...
"My heaviest load," Delattre says, "is counseling.
...
"Those who come," says Delattre, "represent the few remaining persons in North Beach who have any political orientation.
...
"Dr. Rigney," says Delattre, "has discovered that the personality profile of the men around here very closely parallels that of the female social worker.
...
Delattre says the most impressive thing about the rebellion in North Beach is that it is largely a failure
...
Delattre himself sometimes reads.He has been writing poetry since his childhood and his devotion to literature quite obviously approaches his devotion to the Almighty.It was his interest in the correlation of the two, in fact, which brought him to his Mission and to his upstairs flat, where he lives with his wife, their two children and his house guest.A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and of the University of Chicago Divinity School, Delattre moved to California five years ago, was ordained a minister in the
Delattre was attracted to North Beach by the same creativity that attracts others
Northern Presbyterian Church of America, and obtained a job at the University of California YMCA at Berkeley, where he helped develop a program in religion and contemporary culture.
From the beginning, he was attracted to the same creativity that makes North Beach so attractive to others and soon he evolved the idea that the church should open its own coffee house there.When he learned that the Rev. Dr. Spike of the Congregational Board of Home Missions had evolved the same idea, he was, as he says, "really kind of surprised," but not too surprised to leave the Presbyterian Church, join the Congregational, accept the Rev. Dr. Spike's offer to head the project and become the Beat Preacher of North Beach.
Except that the Rev. Delattre, despite his clear, tenor, sermon-like voice, does not preach at The Mission.It is his parishioners who preach.
"Theirs," he says of the people at The Mission, "is a profoundly religious movement, but I would say that they turn to religion in desperation.
...
When Delattre first opened The Mission, the religious fervor, on the surface at least didn't seem very profound.His first visitors included a stream of Grant Avenue habitués who entered The Mission for no other purpose than to insult Delattre, his church or his God.Sometimes Delattre would answer, "Yes, go on."Sometimes he would say, "You have a point there."Soon, of course, North Beach found that Delattre had more to offer than just religion.There was the bread and wine of The Mission's title, there was coffee at five cents a cup and then on Sunday nights, there was a meal prepared by Mrs. Delattre, a psychologist and an actress, and appropriately beautiful,
"Hmmph," said a youth, without a beard, but with all the other newspaper accoutrements of beatness, "Beans tonight!It's a bad night!"
He stood in one of two waiting queues that led from a table in the candlelit center of The
Delattre says in North Beachit's the artistsversus the beaten
Mission and snaked about chairs, metal couches and -metal columns almost to the door, There were perhaps 150 persons waiting, hungry, for the beans.At the table, filling paper plates with a huge ladle from a huge tureen, were Delattre and his wife.
...
"Hold on your plates," shouted Delattre as if sermonizing in his tenor from the pulpit."We have salad for a second course.
"Ah," said another poet, "think of all the poetry in a plateful of beans."
"The Mission," says Delattre, standing in his doorway again, "has come to be important to the community.
The Taos News: Business
www.taosnews.net, 18 April 2002 [cached]
Pierre Delattre owns an art gallery in Truchas.
Pierre Delattre is one of those Renaissance men who settled along the high road.He lives in Peñasco and owns an art gallery in Truchas."The artists who live and work up here are involved in all the arts," said Delattre, a former beat poet to whose home in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Neal Cassidy's body was brought in 1968.
Delattre is a novelist and painter.He said the art community along the High Road is worlds away from the faux sophistication of city art markets."Here, the artists have their own galleries," he said as he took a break from painting in his studio, set up in the garage of the adobe home he converted into his gallery."Visitors have an opportunity to sit down and talk art."
High roaders say the area has huge potential.The question is just how that growth will be managed.
Pierre Delattre - ...
www.taosdaily.com, 1 Jan 2008 [cached]
Pierre Delattre - painter/novelist/poet/memoirist, author of "Tales of a Dalai Lama"(Lost Horse Press) and "Woman on the Cross".
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