Ned Rorem, composer and writer, is both a gifted memoirist and one of our most acerbic cultural commentators. This anthology of his musings on music, people, and life surveys the full range of his literary achievement and reflects the evolution of his sensibilities. The first part of the book is devoted to writing of an autobiographical nature, including ruminations on being alone and on becoming a composer. The second part focuses on music and individuals from Bartok and Ravel to Edith Piaf and the Beatles. The final part consists of portraits and memorials of such figures as Martha Graham, Paul Bowles, Marc Blitzstein, Frank O'Hara, Allen Ginsberg, and Truman Capote. The book also includes a lengthy conversation on the art of the diary.