2012-05-04 / Letters

Ode To A Friend Not Known

Dear Editor,

Last week the Rockaways lost a kindred spirit in the form of Pete Fornatale.

Like many kids of the ‘60s I was drawn to FM radio, away from the top 40 hits of whatever week it happened to be. WNEW FM 102.5 was the real deal introducing us to music (yes and poetry) we would otherwise never hear.

Put Pete Fornatale into this mix and there were no boundaries.

Having lived nearby, I’m sorry to say I never had the chance to meet him and to tell him how much he affected my life.

So if I may, I would like to share a line that I know was from one of his favorite songs:

And close your lips, child, so softly I might kiss you,

Let your flower perfume out and let the winds caress you.

As I walk through the garden, I am hoping I don’t miss you

If all the things you taste ain’t what they seem,

Then don’t mind me ‘cos I ain’t nothin’ but a dream.

— “Follow,“ Richard Havens, 1968

The garden is now one more crowded but it is their gain and our loss.

SHAUN M. REEN

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