American author, Jim Harrison, shares memories of his married life with children and his wife's calm death

March 1, 2016
First Published On: March 1, 2016
by HitBerry

American author, Jim Harrison known for his rugged and outdoorsy books, shared memories of his married life with children at the funeral ceremony held on October, 2015.

Jim Harrison married Linda King , (with whom he has two daughters) in 1959. Recently, his wife died on October 2, 2015, at the age of 74 in Billings, Montana, after struggling for several weeks with a rare lung disease. Linda was a beautiful woman, graceful in all things, a horsewoman, gardener, natural architect, and a phenomenal cook.

Linda died calmly and without pain, surrounded by her family and friends. She spend her last few days reliving her moments with her husband, her daughters and son-in-law Anna and Max Hjortsberg and Jamie and Steve Potenberg, her three grandsons, Will and John Potenberg and Silas Hjortsberg, and her dog Folly.

It was Linda’s wish that there be no memorial service after her death. Instead, it was proposed if anyone wishes to honor Linda’s memory, they could make a donation to Livingston’s Stafford Animal Shelter or its Food Center located at Livingston.

On October 10, Jim Harrison posted on Facebook to inform about the charity to be held in memory of his wife:

‘It is with great sadness that we relate the passing of Linda King Harrison. Please remember Linda and her family in your prayers. Please take note of the mentioned designated charity at the end of the obituary.’

At the end of the obituary, quotes from the poet  was mentioned: ‘ I could say that we are released, but I don’t know, in our private night when our souls explode into a billion fragments then calmly regather in a black pool in the forest, far from the cage of flesh, the unremitting “I” . This was a dream and in dreams we are forever alone walking the ghost road beyond our lives.' 

Though famous for fiction, National Academy Award winning author, Harrison identifies first as a poet. His early reputation was founded on four volumes of poetry. Some of his incredible poems include Plain Song, Locations, Letters to Yesenin, Natural World: A Bestiary, Braided Creek: A Conversation in Poetry, Livingston Suite, Saving Daylight, and Dead Man’s Float. His most recent collection of poetry is Songs of Unreason where he has used interconnected suites, brief lyrics and rollicking narratives.

Harrison has been called “a force of nature” and his work has been compared to that of William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway. The theme of his first novel, Wolf: A False Memoir, and its northern Michigan location drew critical comparisons to Ernest Hemingway’s Nick Adams stories. Two years after Wolf, A Good Day to Die appeared as a statement about the decline of America’s ecological systems. This was followed by Farmer, a Lolita-like account of a country school teacher and farmer coming to grips with middle age and complications of human sexuality. Some of his successful novels are Dalva, Legends of the Fall, Returning to Earth, The Woman Lit by Fireflies, and True North.

Archivist Bernard Fontana, of the University of Arizona, has expressed his belief in the quality of Harrison’s work as: “To read Jim Harrison is to be tattooed”.

Harrison’s net worth has not been disclosed.