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Gansevoort Pier Poets 1967-68 - nhpeacenik
Gansevoort Pier Poets 1967-68
A recent posting by kindnessrejoice  featured her graphic response to a beloved poem,  the footnote to Howl
 by Alan Ginsburg. Seeing her posting inspired me to read the poem aloud to Denise, and this inspired her to dig out a packet of poems and mementos from her college years, when she was part of a remarkable group of poets from all walks of life who got together to recite at Gansevoort Pier in New York each week. Here are some of the documents from that time and place, on the periphery of which you will see names like "Bread and Puppet Theatre", Alan Ginsberg, Leroi Jones. She wonders where the participants in these events are now; maybe some of them are here on LiveJournal... stranger things have happened.

I mentioned this group in connection with the polymath poet Ed Blair, its founder, in an earlier blog posting.

Another interesting item in this packet of documents was a poem by Alice Walker, clipped from the SDS publication, The Activist,  entitled, The New York Times, For Some Reason. Walker had been a classmate of Denise and they had briefly shared an apartment. In the biography of Walker Alice Walker: A Life, by Evelyn C. White, on  page 166 the poem is mentioned as having been excluded from  the  book Once   because it  might  cause the  Times to give it a bad review. The poem may never have been published anywhere but in the SDS paper. It tells  of a visit by Sen. Edward  Kennedy to Vietnam, during which he tried to get Vietnamese  children to play touch football with him but only elicited tears from the understandably frightened children who were much more familiar with hand grenades than footballs.

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