Anthony Peyton Porter left his hometown in the mid-eighties, settling first in Saint Paul, then absconding to Minneapolis, where reliable witnesses heard him muttering on Twin Cities Public Television, Write On Radio!, and Minnesota Public Radio. Promising the usual eternal love, he inveigled artist Janice Lee Perry into marrying him. She put up with him as best she could and died in 2012.
A regular reader gushed, “I have rarely been this turned off by an author. In these few columns I have read of his, he has defiled teachers, children, and dogs.” (Mr. Porter has not defiled any dogs since the late ’90s and wishes certain people would get on with their lives.) David Hingsburger adds, “Forgive me, but Anthony Peyton Porter is a total jerk.”
Mr. Porter has admitted responsibility for the quotations on the walls of the Clayton-Jackson-McGhie Memorial, at First Street and Second Avenue East in Duluth, Minnesota. Carla Stetson designed the memorial, and it’s a stunner. Go see it. That’s right, Duluth.
Jump at de Sun: The Story of Zora Neale Hurston, can still be found at Barnes & Noble, amazon.com, and poorly supervised children’s bookstores. A few copies of Can He Say That? are gathering dust at Black Oak Books in Berkeley, and Carol’s Books in Sacramento.
Mr. Porter was once accused of poetry by people who claimed to know, but it all blew over and he seemed fine for years. Recently he’s been heard mumbling about trochaic this and anapaestic that, so there’s no doubt this time.