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September 09, 2008

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I was fortunate enough to come into possession of Mr. Flint's copy of the poet Agha Shahid Ali's book The Country Without a Post Office with an inscription from the poet to Mr. Flint from 1999:

"for Roland, from whom one learns the necessarily stubborn things, that "there are ways to live the life you haven't had,/ways to forgive the one you have."

The quote Ali inscribes is the opening from Flint's poem "What I Have Tried to Say to You," viewable with a remembrance by Grace Cavalieri here:

http://washingtonart.com/beltway/flint.html

It seems uncanny that Ali died in December, at the end of the same year Flint did, both these wonderful poets taken from us much too soon.

Laura---
Thanks so much for this excellent appreciation of Roland and his work. We met in the 70s---when Roland invited me and Michael Lally to read at Georgetown---but didn't become really good friends until maybe the last ten years of his life. And he was a great friend to have---generous and appreciative to a fault. I know a lot of people felt that way---I remember being astonished at the hundreds of mourners who showed up for his memorial service at Georgetown. You're right too about his work--it deserves continued attention. I wish he were still with us.

I knew Roland well. We were fraternity brothers at the University of North Dakota. He was such an enjoyable person, huge personality, kind, thoughtful, funny, a great talent, a very good teacher, (I understand his classes at Georgetown were always full) a great human being. We stayed in contact through the years. I was invited to be at the ceremony at UND when he received his Honorary Doctor degree. He was North Dakota's poet laureate for North Dakota. I am not a poetry person - -but I was captured by his poetry. Tom Wold

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