On the Passing of Glenn Lord
It was with extreme sadness that I learned of the passing of Glenn Lord with the passing of the year. It makes the beginning of 2012 a much more solemn thing than any new year should be. But I’m pretty sure Glenn wouldn’t see it that way. It’s another year of opportunity for those of us who knew him to press on in his tradition and memory to further the causes of the promotion of the work of Robert E. Howard to a new generation of potential admirers and of the continuation of research into and discussion of Howard’s life and literary legacy.
I only met with Glenn in person on three occasions — all at Howard Days events. I’ll always remember him as a kind and friendly and completely approachable man, with none of the airs one might have taken in the position of preeminent scholar, early biographer, and literary agent for REH. He was a man of vast knowledge with a keen appreciation of literature — both prose and poetry. His successful work in the publication and popularization of Howard’s literature was due to that keen literary sense and masterly work in “time-releasing” excellently chosen anthologies and individual pieces. Especially with the poetry and his several early collections, his sense of selection was excellent.
I carried on a considerable email correspondence with Glenn, especially back when I was first researching and specializing in Howard’s poetry — about a decade ago. Glen was kind enough to send me photocopies of Howard’s portion of the planned poetry anthology, Images Out of the Sky, which was to have been a compilation of some of Howard’s work, along with sections by Tevis Clyde Smith and Lenore Preece. This collection was never published due to the “poor market for poetry,” but Smith later used that title for a collection of his work. Glenn also asked for my help (such as it was) in working out some of a Russian text relating to Howard. I’m afraid that my limited high school Russian wasn’t as much up to the challenge as I’d have wished, but just the thought that he would ask for some help from me on any subject was both humbling and gratifying.
In 2001, with the first (and only) awarding of my concept of the “Cleo Awards” — named for Bob’s favorite objet d’art (the refurbished original bust of Cleopatra still in the Howard house), there was absolutely no question when the balloting was tallied to whom the LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT award would justly go. I’m sure that small trophy would have no high place among the many accolades that Glenn earned over the years, but it was gratifying to me to simply be able to see it go his way.
And that was Glenn Lord — a lifetime of achievement. He was a fine man who had a significant effect upon his world and who blazed trails and set landmarks and standards of achievement for others to follow. What man could ask for a better legacy than that?