Donald Harrington died this past weekend.
I've read a couple of his books, and didn't really like them.
But I liked him.
I liked the cover for his book, Architecture of the Ozarks, which Dr. Prewitt would encourage us to read and would hold aloft and say, "Now! When you go into the bookstore and you don't remember the author or title, look for this."
I liked the articles he wrote for Oxford American.
I'd heard him read at a few panels for the Arkansas Literary Festival.
I like that I have his autograph on a festival program from 2007.
I like that my friend Eden likes him so much she considered becoming a groupie and that I completely encouraged her to show up at the literary festival one year with his name written across the seat of her pants in glitter.
I like that her dignity and good sense won out.
I liked his story-telling--his enjoyment of a story, and the telling of it, and your enjoyment of it.
I liked him.
Arkansas, literature, and everything in general will be worse off without him.
Goodbye, sir. You were under-recognized, but very liked.
And now you'll be missed.