Saturday, October 5, 2013

the last book I ever read (Frank Lloyd Wright: A Life by Ada Louise Huxtable, excerpt two)

from Frank Lloyd Wright (Penguin Lives) by Ada Louise Huxtable:

After the divorce, William seems to have been in perpetual motion, moving back and forth, from Nebraska to Missouri and Iowa, and finally to the home of a son by his first marriage, near Pittsburgh, where he died in 1904. In the last part of his life, he passed through twenty towns and seven states. The children of his first family remembered a sweet and cheerful man reduced to depression and despondency with the continuous downward spiral of his life. Those who saw Anna as the unfortunate victim of a bad marriage dismissed him as a self-centered dreamer pursuing personal fulfillment. It is more likely that he was a charming and impractical man whose real virtues and abilities lay in the music and literature he loved, pursuing an elusive livelihood in an unremunerative profession in hard times, with none of the survival skills later perfected by his son. When William was buried in Wisconsin with his first wife, Frank did not attend the funeral; it is known, however, that he made solitary visits to the grave in later years. One can read in Wright’s memoirs the mixed memories of the father who grew more remote, the two joined only by the music they shared.

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