I am reliably informed that Kenneth Grant – born in 1924 –died two weeks back.
I have many memories of Kenneth, and will tell them, one by one, and over and over again. I have many letters from him, and will scan them in. Kenneth was a polymath, and said over and over again the power of words was the greatest thing on the planet. He tried to get me to give his letters back to him, but I was a bit of a refusenik about that – it was he who told me that when letters were sent they were the property of the receptor. What a man!
Kenneth lived in a Typhonian Tower,and a bit like the Lady of Shallott, was always looking out for strangers living in Golders Green, he lived there for a long time, with strange creatures outside the suburban semi he, Steffi and Gregori lived.
Grant was a genius in many ways, and an idiot in other ways. In his loft was a vast collection of Austin Osman Spare paintings but once he asked me to get rid of a vast collection of 1950s pornographic paintings.
My then girlfriend, Jan Bailey, a co-editor of Sothis magazine, helped me to dump Kenneth’s 1950s porn – it took five weeks – there was so much of it. It all went in several bins.
Kenneth was eloquent about sex – his books are full of it. Once, he said, he shagged a Chinese woman on a graveyard in Soho – he said her tits were so small but her thighs so big that he came all over her face, almost immediately.
He was far less forthcoming about the Ordo Templi Orientis. This was Mr Grant’s Ivory Tower. He became a refusinek if you asked him anything about it at all – I’m kind of thinking he didn’t want to think about it himself.
In short, Kenneth Grant was a very nice person and I am totalled that he is dead. I loved him.