Myths from a Draft-Dodging Poet

Author: Richard Lemm

Memory is not only selective, it’s an amazing liar, con artist and spin doctor. History is what we choose to remember about the past in order to justify the present.

Richard Lemm grew up in cool 1960s Seattle, raised by alcoholic grandparents with a mad, absent mother and a mythic father who might or might not have died before he was born. To avoid the draft, he left “the greatest country in the world” and moved to Canada just as the Age of Aquarius was dawning. Now, having constructed a new and equally imagined identity, he uses his poet’s sensibility to examine the myths, familial and cultural, that shaped his youth—the unsettled frontier, the noble warrior, the little woman, the golden age of the 1950s and the inexhaustible natural resources of the Pacific Northwest. 

This wry, poignant and insightful memoir looks at growing up in a family and
country you didn’t chose and coming of age in the country and with the people you did.

  • Non-fiction, 272pp
  • ISBN 978-1-990160-06-6 (paperback)
  • ISBN 978-1-990160-07-3 (e-book)
  • 5.5″ x 8.5″
  • Published October 2021
  • Paperback: CA $21.95 / US $17.95
  • Ebook: CA $8.95 / US $5.95

Richard Lemm applies a poet’s line-by-line discipline, eye for detail, and ear for language to every sentence in this exceptionally vivid, affecting memoir . . .  Imagined Truths is as important politically and historically as it is emotionally and stylistically.

Steven Heighton, Author of Reaching Mithymna and The Waking Comes Late

This book is  a meaningful document that chronicles one person’s response to the volatile political and ideological climate in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s. . . a wise and illuminating account of an exceptional life shaped by extraordinary times. Read the full review.

We all have our mythos, and critically examining them isn’t easy. I wish more settler folks would do it; I think it’s a really important way to understand our true origins, and how so many of our sacred cows are such piles of manure. Doing so helps us better understand not only the past, but also the present, our place in the modern world. . .

Chris Benjamin, Atlantic Books Today