Maretta Greer, another of Allen’s “girlfriends”, his mantra teacher, spiritual goad, and sometime live-in companion, when she wasn’t (as she was, a good deal of the time) wandering barefoot around India.
She’d left home at aged fifteen to become a saddhu.
“She was silent, slim, blonde and high-cheekboned, a small wool cap on her head, a big dark heavy coat from neck down. Lips tightly closed, head and back erect, she moved slowly, deliberately, quietly, sternly, a crane among ostriches. She was Maretta Greer, back from many months among saddhus in India, Pakistan, Tibet. Someone in the crowded linoleum-floored lobby whispered, “She knows Tibetan!”.
They met when she had just returned from an Indian sojourn, in 1964. Maretta came round and introduced herself.
Ed Sanders recalls her sorry state only a year or so later:
“It was a snowy January day. I was at Peace Eye (bookstore). All of a sudden a cab stopped and Maretta Greer stepped out, fresh from JFK airport.There she was barefoot in the snow, the cab speeding away. She’d been deported from India. She was trembling with excitement, quite beautiful…She was trembling and distraught. I invited her into the store. She was hallucinating. She pointed at the store desk and said, “They are caught in the Transylvanian Transvestite Time Trap!”..
Allen’s perhaps less generous confidence to Gordon Ball – ” Her problem is she thinks wherever she is is her own private garden”
That’s a problem?