Errol flynn and true history: 1909-2009


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Errol Flynn, an Australian-born film actor, was popular for his romantic roles in Hollywood films and also for his flamboyant lifestyle. Flynn was born in Hobart Tasmania 100 years ago today, on 20 June 1909 and I write this prose-poem as a sort of quasi-eulogistic, personal reminiscence, personal reflection on Flynn, my life and our respective ways and beliefs. He was born three months after the wooden casket containing the sacred remains of the Báb were placed in a marble sarcophagus in Haifa Israel inside what is now the Shrine of the Báb. Flynn died the day, or perhaps it was the week, that I joined the Bahá'í Faith, the religion which the Báb had come to announce, much like John the Baptist had done in preparing the way for the coming of Jesus two thousand years before. Flynn died on 14 October 1959. –Ron Price, Pioneering Over Four Epochs, 20 June 2009.

You were getting famous, Errol,
right at the start of that teaching
Plan, in those entre deux guerres1
years....your first novel came out
in the first year of that teaching
Plan--1937--and you were still
getting your name in lights when
I was getting into this new religion
that came into town back in those
50s when rock-‘n-roll started, words
for Negroes & genitalia were no-nos
and a superficial propriety prevailed.1

My autobiography will not be as
compelling as your’s-My Wicked
Wicked Ways-released just before
Christmas when I was fifteen, still
in love with Susan Gregory & never
having heard of you or your book....

You pulled no punches about your
convictions, obsessions, addictions,
Errol, but your exaggerations, your
entertainment and shock makes the
work ahistorical and a confirmation
of the view that it is impossible to write
autobiography that is really true history.

1 A French expression for ‘the years between WWI and WW2’
2 D.T. Miller and M. Nowak, The Fifties: The Way We Really Were, Doubleday & Co. Ltd., NY, 1977, p.302.

Ron Price
20 June 2009