Edwin Morgan (1920–2010)

Bill Sherman, in a comment to this morning’s post, informed me that the Scots poet/makar Edwin Morgan had passed at 90. You can read a first obit by the BBC here. Bill included the following poem, which I’ll also reproduce: My life, as a slant of rain on the grey earth fields is gathered in thirsty silence, disappears. I cannot even guess the roots, but I feel them sighing … Read more Edwin Morgan (1920–2010)

Against Tyrrany

This morning, reading about the English critic Frank Kermode‘s passing at ninety (here and here among many other places), I couldn’t help thinking back on Eric Mottram (who passed away at barely 70 nearly fifteen years ago) who had so often warned me (& others) about Kermode’s reactionary literary stances — even if both men had followed each other on the stand at the Old Bailey in defense of … Read more Against Tyrrany

Tony Judt (1948 -2010)

Tony Judt died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis –  Lou Gehrig’s disease — on Saturday. Over the years I have  immensely enjoyed the historian’s brilliant and insightful essays (at times acerbic-romantic, at times outrageous-calmly British)  Of course I have not always agreed with his stances, intellectual or historical. Let me just mention along those lines of disagreement his claim that the 70ies were an intellectually disastrous period in France because … Read more Tony Judt (1948 -2010)

Homage & Good-Bye to Tuli Kupferberg

On Saturday a Tuli Kupferberg homage was held at Saint Marks in the Bowery’s Poetry Project. The Fugs performed a number of Tuli’s songs, and some 40 plus people spoke or read to honor Tuli, in the very full hall. Below, my amateurish recording of the Fugs doing a Tuli song (an extract, really), and below that my translation of the 1969 Claude Pélieu poem dedicated to Tuli, which … Read more Homage & Good-Bye to Tuli Kupferberg

Crossing the Bar

And thus Robert C. Byrd kicked the proverbial bucket at 92, which could become problematic for votes in the Senate under the Obama administration. That old southerner who made good (a politician who can change his mind and acknowledge that he was wrong is a rare bird indeed) he was a lover & connoisseur of poetry. Here’s his favorite, in memoriam: “Crossing the Bar” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson Sunset … Read more Crossing the Bar

Memorial Reading for Leslie Scalapino

On Monday night, a memorial reading for Leslie Scalapino was held at the St Mark’s Poetry Project, in the presence of Tom White, Leslie’s husband, and organized by E. Tracy Grinnell and Charles Bernstein (the latter’s contribution is online here.) A most moving event, with some 20 participants and culminating in the showing Konrad Steiner’s video of Leslie Scalapino reading from The Dihedrons Gazelle-Dihedrals Zoom,   (the still above is … Read more Memorial Reading for Leslie Scalapino

Roger Manderscheid (1933-2010)

And the Memorial Day occasion stretches on: news just in that the Luxembourg writer Roger Manderscheid, an old & dear friend, died on Tuesday night. Of the generation just preceding mine, he was the most prolific, radical, engaged, political, satirical, and plain humorous poet, novelist, playwright in both the German and the Luxembourg languages, as well as being a superb visual artist. His 1988 novel schacko klak, written in … Read more Roger Manderscheid (1933-2010)

Peter Orlovsky (1933 -2010)

Anne Waldman on Peter Orlovsky’s Passing: “The Shellean farmer astride hid Pegasusian tractor” as Gregory Corso once knighted him passed on today, May 30 2010 to the elysian fields, a bardo of becoming. First glance hour earlier Peter was resting with “trach” in throat in orange sheets at the kind Vt Respite Center in Williston, Vermont (but no extra tubes/ heroic measures for this advanced cancer on his lung!), … Read more Peter Orlovsky (1933 -2010)