Doug Wright grew up in Dallas and is home for Theater Three’s production of his play “Hands On A Hardbody.” Doug won the Pulitzer Prize in drama in 2004 for “I Am My Own Wife,” which deals with the life of german transvestite Charlotte von Mahlsdorf who survived both the Nazis and the communists.
On a cold, nasty wet day in February 1992 writer Bryan Woolley and I drove down to John Graves’ place on White Bluff Creek in Somervell County. We were both working for The Dallas Morning News and we were about to meet one of Bryan’s old friends and one of my literary heroes.
When we drove through the gate at Hard Scrabble we were greeted by John’s sheepdog Hodge, who was 10 and a bit stove-up in the hindquarters. He checked us out when we stepped out of my Bronco and decided that we were neither coyotes nor skunks, merely journalists, so we were allowed to pass.
John and his wife Jane met us on the porch of their home and invited us inside where it was warm and there was coffee.
I spent the next few hours listening to John and Bryan talk literature and books. While they talked I shot.
When John and I talked it was mostly about rivers and fly fishing and books about rivers and fly fishing. He was friends with Nick Lyons and at that time, ’92, he and Jane were still making yearly trips down to Florida to fish for tarpon with Lyons and a batch of other literary luminaries.
As the day and our time with John and Jane waned, I asked if I could come back the following weekend to photograph John fishing on White Bluff Creek, the small limestone stream that runs through Hardscrabble. He said, “Absolutely.”
A few days later I returned, made my photos and then spent some time fishing John’s 2-weight rod for perch in John’s creek.
I have, for the past 30 years, made dozens of canoe trips down John’s stretch of the Brazos. Sometimes with writer friends of my own and sometimes alone.
There, alone, thigh-deep in John’s river, I am my most serene.
Actor Val Kilmer sat for a portrait at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre at the AT&T Performing Arts Center today, Wednesday April 10, 2013. He’s touring with his new one-man play Citizen Twain.
I had time to make eight frames of Michael Morpurgo in a small meeting room at Dallas’ Fairmont Hotel. He is a fascinating interview and his story will run soon at www.theaterjones.com. War Horse opens at Dallas’ Winspear Opera House. on Sept. 12.
Michael wears the hell outta that hat!