Peter Matthiessen

Peter Matthiessen's note on Crooked Cucumber

Peter was at Tassajara early on with his wife Deboraoh who died not long after that. They were there in 1967 or maybe 1968. Deborah is listed as a generous donor toward the original purchase of Tassajara.

David Silva quoted him on his web page: I am content. The great stillness of these landscapes seeps into me day by day, and with it, the unreasonable feeling that I have found what I was searching for without ever having discovered what it was.

Margo Wilke mentions Peter in her interview: There were six of us on the board at Zen Studies who left including Peter Matthiessen. Haven’t seen Edo since. I just wrote him a letter and we were through. He had no remorse. 


From Cuke Sangha News

4-06-14 - Peter Matthiessen has died. - thanks Brit Pyland

NY Times

SF Gate


Peter Matthiessen’s Homegoing - NY Times Magazine - thanks Doug McKechnie

Peter and his wife who died soon after, Deborah, were at Tassajara with Suzuki Roshi and the rest of us for a while. He became a priest in Maezumi's White Plum Asanga. I loved his At Play in the Fields of the Lord. He gave 1st wife Daya (Dianne) and me The Tree Where Man Was Born for a wedding present. The cuke bibliography, lists his book,Nine-Headed Dragon River:Zen Journals 1969 - 1982 with the following: "Matthiessen's path includes a bit of Suzuki, more background accounts of Soen Nakagawa, Yasutani, and Eido Shimano Roshis." He was helpful to me over the phone with research on Crooked Cucumber and sent this blurb. He's been a diligent, articulate trooper for harm reduction. - DC

Peter gave a talk in February 1998 at the SFZC's Buddhism at Millenium's Edge series.

Search for Peter's name on cuke for other mentions.