Ursula K. Le Guin
Notes from the Inner City

Daughter of itinerants,

ungrateful refusers of benefits and charity,

in terror of the all-embracing arms

I turned from the tabernacles of turkey

and progeny of toothpaste, I ran and hid

from the love that damns and pardons,

I dodged the draft from the golden doors

and let the wild west wind carry me

with torn newspapers, cigarette butts, condoms,

up against the chainlink fence at the world’s ends

in a red November evening.


Ursula K. Le Guin
A Non-Euclidean View of California as a Cold Place to Be (1982)

drawing by Ruth Irving

Robert C. Elliott died in 1981 in the very noon of is scholarship, just after completing his book The Literary Persona. He was the truest of teachers, the kindest of friends. This paper was prepared to be read as the first in a series of lectures at his college of the University of California, Sari Diego, honoring his memory.