Diane Di Prima‘s new book from City Lights – The Poetry Deal is out. We’ve reported before about her recent troubling health difficulties. The emergencies still remain but still the urgency of the work, still the extraordinary achievement of the work. “In The Poetry Deal“, her publishers write, (di) Prima maps out over forty years of San Francisco history, from the culture of the late ‘Sixties, to her grief over her friends’ passing during the AIDS epidemic, to stories of her countercultural colleagues and the rapidly changing environment she has seen take place over the years in (San Francisco), the City by the Bay. Though (she) admits that the city is different today than it was in the “Golden Years” she had once experienced, she retains a sense of hope and positivety throughout her poems, a vision of the future that she outline(s) clearly in her address..” Jonah Raskin‘s recent interview with her in the San Francisco Chronicle is a little window into this positivety and not to be missed – “Poetry is my life, my commitment”, she declares, “I accept it unconditionally” – “I look out and see what once existed, not what’s actually there. I see what I love and I keep on trucking”.
A brief selection from the book can be found here on our good friends’ Reality Sandwich‘s page.
Further excerpts are available via her City Lights page
“We Are Continually Exposed to the Flashbulb of Death”, Allen’s photographic show at the University of Toronto – “The Photographs of Allen Ginsberg 1953-1996” continues (until December 6), here‘s Brian Hassett‘s report