My next door neighbors from 1971 to 1980 in Northampton were the Bagg family – Bob Bagg, a UMass English Professor, Sally Bagg, a cellist [in whose parents’ home they then lived], and five children, Teddy, Chris, Jonathan, Melissa, and Hazard. Hazzie was a bit older than my older son, Patrick. Bob is a poet – one of the “Amherst poets” in the line that began with Robert Frost and continued through Richard Wilbur [with whose beautiful wife I danced in the American Academy in Rome on New Year’s Eve 1954, when I had just turned twenty-one and she was amusing herself by vamping me.] Jonathan is now the violist of the Ciompi Quartet, which is in residence at Duke University, where Susie and I have heard him several times.
One of Bob’s poems concerns a meeting with a woman, in which there appears the line “J’arrive, J’arrive.” I think the meeting takes place on the Riviera, but it is forty years and more since I have read the poem. Anyway, I always think that is what I should say when I get to Paris, so: