Sunday, October 24, 2010

Three Photos

Paul and Alexander Williams, Oct. 24,2010. This was the first of the three photos. I showed Paul the book I picked up a few weeks ago near Harvard: Patti Smith's Just Kids, and I'd bookmarked the page where she mentions her admiration for Paul and Crawdaddy magazine. He was very interested to read what she said and continued reading a few pages after. He rarely reads nowadays so it was nice to see him enjoying a book.

Paul often has one eye shut. The doc's never did figure out just why that is, speculating that it is a tic, like the bending over he does every minute or so. I asked Paul to open both eyes for this photo and you can see how hard it is for him to do. He really concentrated to make himself do it. I think whatever is going wrong in his brain is affecting his eyesight. Clearly you can see in this photo, he has a sort of 'wandering eye' gaze now. Something he never demonstrated until the last few years.

This one was the best of the three
photos Alexander and Paul look at ease with one another and Paul is relieved that he can close his right eye again. Alexander has a very minimal relationship with his dad, even before Paul was moved into the nursing home, but he does like seeing his dad smile. And Alexander consistently makes Paul smile.


  1. Hi! Just checked out the blog for the first time in ages. SUPER to see picture of Paul and Alexander, and Paul smiling!!! Hooray and thank you!! He is still in there in some way! Thinking of you all and sending love!

    Michael Lydon

  2. Hi,
    I'm Paul's first cousin from the Bay Area. Thank you for sharing. I have not seen Paul in probably 25 years and just, by chance, came across your blog.
    I was wondering what had happened to our cousins on the Williams side of the family since we do not keep in touch.
    Thank you for posting the pics of Paul.
    Gregg and Barbara Williams

  3. Hi there,

    I recently acquired Das Energi from my boyfriend who received it from his good friend who picked it up at a used book store in Glendale, CA where someone had written in it: "Rachel, I hope this brings you happiness! -Deborah".

    I have to say- it is bringing me more happiness than I think I can stand, and it looks as though it has seen many hands. I'm very much looking forward to sharing Paul's thoughts with anyone who will listen.

    Coming across your blog, I can see you are a brave and dedicated family, and I just thought I would send some good energy your way.

    Here's to being happy,

  4. Thank you all for your comments:
    Courtney, so glad you came across Pauls book, he wrote that when he was 21/22 and living in a commune off of Vancouver Island. He wrote another book while there called Apple Bay, it's a very frank look at young people reinventing the wheel of societal relationships. Difficult to find and maybe equally as difficult to read....

    Michael, wonderful to hear from you. Thank you for your letter and contribution some time back. Paul loved that you thought about him and when I've mentioned your name he smiles he shakes his head with fond memories. He does remember his old friends quite well.

    Gregg and Barbara, I'm not sure that we have met. Probably when Paul was living in Glen Ellen he would see you up that way. Thank you for dropping in and saying hello. I didn't know that Robert Williams had a sibling actually. Pauls dad is still alive and lives in a retirement community with his long time wife Erica in Seattle.

  5. CLB,

    Yes the third picture of Paul and Alexander is a great shot, their relationship in this photo is touching, even knowing the backstory.
    Quite a pair of eyes Alexander has. He really knows how to make eye contact with the camera, or his Mom behind the camera. There’s still a lot of kid in this kid, not like some children I know who seem closed off to their childhood, and wonder.