Long-time NHLA members will be saddened to learn of the death of Peter Straw Kidd, also known as Igbear and Dr. Blossom. Peter died in Amarillo, Texas on June 12, 2020, after having recently celebrated his 73rd birthday with close family members on June 5 at his residence in Canyon, Texas.
Peter was born in 1947 to R. Richard Kidd and Joan Straw Kidd in Springfield, Illinois. At the age of four, his family, including Martha and James Richard, followed his father’s career as a corporate executive, moving to New Canaan, Connecticut, a commuter town to New York City. It was in New Canaan that Peter came to know life-long friends Gregory Raymond, Hiland M. Hall, and Tim Lovitt.
Excelling as a football player in high school and being nimble of mind, Peter went on to study International Affairs and Political Science at Columbia University in New York. By junior year, Peter realized he had no spiritual equals on campus, deciding to abscond on a Yugoslavian freighter to Morocco, where he joined Hall, Raymond, and Lovitt in Tangier, living through events narrated in his novel, The Moroccan Grail. Peter spent three years in Morocco, working with British historian and occultist Trevor Ravenscroft to rewrite the history of French king, Charlemagne. It was during the writing of this history that Peter met Michel Angela Petersen, Ravenscroft’s daughter, a union that lasted long enough to give birth to daughter Sophia Grace.
Some years later, Peter Kidd married Edna Marie Doucet, with whom he raised three children, Alexander Straw, Matthew Doucet and Ella Kidd, along with Sophia, in Bedford, New Hampshire.
Peter worked for himself, building Landscapes by Peter Kidd, a successful professional practice based upon his love of beauty in design and attention to nature’s cycles of death and rebirth.
Not long after his children grew up and moved out of the house, he moved to Texas to live with his love and life partner, writer Linda Rowland Stone.
Peter was one of the founders of NHLA and became President in 1986. From 1982-84 he was the editor of the NHLA Newsletter and continued as a frequent contributor through 2015.
Peter wrote fiction, reviews, and plays, as well as poetry. Novels include three books: The Raven, The Moroccan Grail, and Murder in Manchester, all to be published posthumously. Two large volumes of poetry include The Human Condition, upcoming 2021, and Bums Rush, a tribute to San Francisco poet, Bob Kaufman. Peter started Igneus Press in 1990, which has published approximately 50 books of poetry and plays.
Peter is survived by his life partner, Linda Stone, and her three children, whom he loved as his own: Philip Brec Stone, Stacy Deon Tucker, and Sarah Alyson Stone; his sons Alexander and Matthew, daughters Sophia and Ella; and sister, Martha Kidd-Cyr.
On Landscape Design
— by Peter Kidd
at most, an index card is needed, for estimates
in terms of script
an idea one can’t remember
isn’t an idea worth reproducing
on an even larger scale …
and yet, the paradox
the prophet’s cool breath
the letter of the law
and I, too, dabble
sketch and draw maps
wishing I had increased vision …