Photo by Brian Lucas
A Tribute to Dale, by Whit Griffin
I was first made aware of Dale Pendell’s work by Gerrit Lansing and Peter Lamborn Wilson. I believe it was during a visit to Gloucester that Gerrit told me to investigate Dale’s Pharmako trilogy. In later correspondence with PLW he told me that he was friendly with Dale and had (as Hakim Bey) contributed a blurb to Dale’s Pharmako / Dynamis (the second book in the trilogy). Both deeply rooted in the science as well as the occult properties of plants along the “poison path,” Dale was a master of herbcraft and lore. Dale’s work was a kind of beacon for me, shining a light over shared terrain.
It is my belief that the ultimate goal for artists (for all of humanity) is to further the evolution of consciousness. There is so much to learn from the living world. What would our society look like if, instead of studying dead specimens, we partnered with living plants? It was a thrill and honor to share a brief correspondence with Dale. I sent him a couple of my books, and we had a sporadic back and forth in the last years of his life. I don’t think Dale ever received the recognition he deserved. I’ll leave it to others to write critically about his work and legacy. This is meant as a tribute to a visionary poet whose work resonated within the cosmos of innerspace.
Dale’s personal website: http://dalependell.com/
On the Poison Path: An Interview with Dale Pendell: with David Levi Strauss, Peter Lamborn Wilson, and Dale Pendell