Justin Desmangles Selects: The Flower Thief
Poet and radio producer Justin Desmangles is collaborating on an opera on poet Bob Kaufman’s life; he contributed an essay to Black Hollywood Unchained (2015), edited by Ishmael Reed.
Taylor Mead, Bob Kaufman, “Big Daddy” Nord,
“In the old Hollywood days movie studios would keep a man on the set who, when all other sources of ideas failed . . . was called upon to ‘cook up’ something. . . . He was called The Wild Man. The Flower Thief has been put together in memory of all the dead wild men” (Ron Rice). Rice’s landmark first film stars Taylor Mead as a young man who lives for the moment, lavishing his love and enthusiasm upon whatever strikes his fancy. This joyous testament to the Beat Generation was shot in San Francisco and features Bob Kaufman, among other locals.