Poet of the day: d.a.levy

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Fri, 07/14/2006 - 16:13.




delivered on time to persons with city & state line bearing
only the words DEATH CITY - I suppose there is present
in the city a speed carrying living cartoons toward death
& an anxiety that pushed one over the edge of the ocean
sooner than necessary - i have seen people falling, under
New Yorks strange wheels of time,
                but there are worse places
there is AMERICA THE HOME OF THE VOID - 2500 miles of apathy &
lack of communication...cities like cleveland & it leaves
an uneasy feeling to think of justice
                  & love and then find oneself
lost in a city of war monuments;

in the morning the sun rises in the east & the
trumpets blare as wheelbarrows of $ $ are rolled
the children dressed in rags
    bow down in reverence &
the children dressed in the bright-light of dreams
    shout hossanas to the golden images
the sun rises in the east
    RA   is   a rain of dry tears over the dust of allah
    JAHVEH has tossed the karmic dice
    JESUS & MILAREPA & BUDDHA playing cards in a
        lost room on the SOLAR BARQUE
the rainbowed children are ONE BODY
in their church of open sky
hemmed with banks and dimestores
and the new image of god is hailed
    OH - children of DEATH
the wind in the trees of the forest city.
the coins freshly minted in solemn temple
& the resurrection is eternal      OH
god is gold & green like the leaves
in the trees & the silver stars twinkle
on the domes of 8AM time vaults

(i am looking for a comet on a shelf of quarters)

you infinitely portable god - a quiet god
heard deep inside the pocket - a soft mantra
of money that has taken over - the mass mind


YOU - lost in dreams of stallions &
             television violence
YOU ARE DYING in yr suburban homes
YOU ARE DYING - the 11:20 NEWS is a lie
the 7:30 news is a lie
huntley & brinkley are lies
the weather report is a cartoon

     the angel of death is not news
     you failed in yr toilet training you dreamers
     without identities


     you are sitting there
     sucking it up
     the friday night horror movie is really
     a HAPPENING in viet nam
     the prisons of Spain are packed like a tin
of sardines
     you are paying for them
     you are paying for the death of others
     you are paying
                   wth yr hemorrhoids
& wet dreams ... shooting up with channel 3/5/8
& it is killing you faster than shooting
methedrine crystals on the beaches of lake erie
... in between the stench of fish - young
trains of skinnylegs are coupling - maggot infested
fish...soft breast...a rat carries a piece of puke
home ... hand under skirt-thunderbird cockman
(& theyre blowing Lady Jane on the western front)...
driftwood - the lightening in the void ... OM MANI PAD ME HUM ...
broken glass ... beer courage ... fires & fires & shouts from
Sandusky to ERIE ... this fast dry "rocks off" lay is not
TANTRA (FUCK is not the ultimate expression of
love)...the sunrises in the east & the weekends
are not washed away - no one wears a white shirt
    if they understand the tragedy of LOCKWIERD *
smells like rotting abortions on bayonets
        would you beleive it  BULLETIN:   the white
virgin is dead - electric chair on television...there's a
lot of chicks balling with sand in the cracks of their
asses .. dry dock...i burn incense
                we share pieces of light &
                i remember the skeleton of a
                ship half buried in the sand
                & a photograph of a nude model 1920
                carefully placed under an empty
                gallo wine bottle




  & Dr. Wagner "the dreams here are getting to be too much

HEAD-LINE . . . . . . BOO

CULTURAL EVENTS : HEADLINE : --- the ring of heavenly blue
    Morning glorys circling the feet of ST. EMERIC
    has been condemned by the popoff as a
    communist plot to advertise L.S.D. & degrade
    the church - the popoff wore a lace peek-a-boo
    nighty an american flag & sed Bless everyone
    Xcept the Peace Creeps & P.S, George Lincoln
    Ratwell is a reincarnation of Saint Paul & he
    is not excommunicated from the church...

my second abortion this week - i sed was like eating
a bottle of ground glass - the shadows under this jung
chicks eyes...in the Suburbs BATMAN & FLASH
GORDON & L.B.J. SUPERHEROS - the superheros
FOR EVERY OCCASSION * "what are you asking
me a chicken shit question like that for" the president
still puzzled over the pyramid on his dollar bills -

ACTION LIE - does NASSER really own 1/3 of America
        & love - the group is small but DANGEROUS - NARCOTICS
    & commy propaganda -

behind the scenes & under the desk with a mona lisa

        what are these people trying to say   ?

          & DYING
in the mouth with the poisons you feed them
in the ear with the tripe you tell them
in the mind with unusuable knowledge & lies
in the spirit with illusions
in the ass by the neighborhood 14 yr old queer who
    learned to love with his mouth before he
    could get an erection...
in dreams with compromise * yr daughters
   hymen is a myth to the high school dyke
   on the tennis court - Mayor
Locher is a whore...the police dept is a dream
house - the syphilis of ignorance & the brutality are heredit
you are fucking your sons and daughters with apathy
                 & lack of vision

   (this will be taken out of context)    or as the
latest 18 yr old abortion on the scene sucking up
beers faster than Zorro could circumcise a bad ass
or whip a masochist in a gay bar   CRACK  - 
she sed it wasnt the "dusting & cleaning; it was the
furniture polish they used that brought her down
was another hour & then under the table & then
HANNA PAVILION & then she sed "it was when i
was 16 & dreams - mist-electric love for a fatherless
fathers eye - no one swemed to understand - i didnt
want an icebox in my bedroom - i wanted Someone to

     oh you know they have a T.V. here too ?


           sometimes we walk around east Cleveland
           the lady is 18 - a bucks county hindu
           she smiles & laughs
           she is collecting the years like dust
(it is difficult to remember - the bombs have dropped)
           today she saw a piece of my mirror
           & the sunlight of Amen Ra ... later she broke out
in hives - it was a sweaty afternoon - her sculptured
being unbeleivably hindu - we read the KAMA SUTRA
lying in bed together - she wore a small red bow and
her kiss did not have sand in it
         i burned a candle

     the green coyote in the wastebasket wept
     as i uncovered a white sun
     everyone tells me its not the same
     as the one the people of cleveland
     put in the sky - the sun rises in the
     my white sun, white star
                   her green eyes like an egyptian cat
     we are both dying

TRINITY HEADLINE: the green gold father - the finance company &
              the holy ghost of television have santified T.V.
          DINNERS as a religious sacrament..."of course
          i fall right into a trance after a quick frozen
          dinner - who needs zen"
    her face is always flushed with sum inner excitment
we get on the rapid at Cedar & the trip doesnt end
"the dreams here are getting to be too much" Dr. Wagner
i hope winter arrives ... we are moving the sun out of the
suburbs -
                     LATE EDITION HEADLINE

                    PEACE CREEPS STAND IN RAIN & SNOW


sumthin else...U Ching (The Hebrew Book of Changes) begins a
         new cycle at the end of the fifth section - or
a new psychedelic Rug scene..tibetan gothic patterns COKE - kill for
Coca Cola  the 4th peace Reich ; sing
            "mother, i dont know who
            put the cocaine in
            the excedrine bottle"      (SCREAM)
change tune if line #3 is looose in yr mind
                 in my mind
its like st pauls cathedral
            "& no one told me
               what to do / with all this
                  in my mind
              a mirror
refleckted in &          the moon    SHOOTING RAYS
   breaking from      transparent  flickering on the walls
             PLASTIC FORM MMMmmmmm"
                            new colors?
Baby Ruths Blues - blue flowers jump off her dress & before my eyes
SPRONGGGGGG Am Bars, white powder & wine - i get my head so tired
its full of flames...i want to become a human lamp/ Xcept i turn in
to a player piano  THIS IS DIFFERENT---lady jane prayerwheels dont
work - i start & finish talking simultaneously in 24 hours - the
beer can jumps at me - i cant get it Up like Osiris(his balls in a
pawn shop. . . . .(Who I GOING) everyones saying

in the morning
          my grey face
                       still talking to the fireplace
the real candles burn out-in the background "You cant outtalk the
Angel of Death" over over over overover over & the record is
off   but "i been wading thru the shit in Cleveland, mother
        & nobodies got the time"
trees whisper novenas for the lady with black nostrils
       "someday sum angel
        gona try to break in my brain
        hes gona be suprized
        i got a bomb & no pain
        i go to sleep in the morning
        wake up at four
        8000 nobodies waiting at the door
        Screaming WHO AM I WHO AM I"

         WHERES THE NIGHTMARE? angel the viet cong under my bed
& god is dead     How come We're Still Riding

                       Next Week the BIG THEY
rounds up all the leaders HA HA "you aint got ennuf jails"
            YOU SAY HAHA you "got the bullets"
            & "sumbody'll give you the ground
            & "imported Assyrian Bulls to cover the
           crematorium ______
           'i smell love burning'
            & everyone sez "You got to compromise
            & the smell is from the lake",
            & "i smell souls dying"

LAST HEADLINE:  & STARS # 51 to 64 will contain small swastikas
            commemorating a similar unifying investment
            of the past..... "

                        (6)               -for Phil Ochs-

ODE TO MAYOR LOCHER - Home is the Hunky

the dogs are in uniform at the Hough Ave Airport
waiting to greet you & the people with dog minds
the people in dog suits - the dog mind    a
     HA HA            you old rascal
you're not a police dog - you're in drag
i see yr zipper      ole mayor locher/
unzip ole ralphy & we got       "GOTT IN HIMMEL"
its SUPER SERVICE the gas station mechanic - the
    pharoah of Fairview park
    the maniac Buddha mind of Brookpark Village
    its an ibis/ a swallow/ a phoenix/
    its SUPER funk..... Ole Magyar Locher
you ain't even a bad guy
                you're like prez Johnson
                who plays
                strange new forms of music
                "Jazz Politics"
                "Fug the people" (it seems ive
heard that riff before)
Ole Magyar of Swamp Erie - your empty face
                you aint even a bad guy
                you are just one of the replacable
                3 stooges
                Ralph/Larry & Moe
Ole wise man of Cleveland
you're just like prez Johnson
who plays
musical electric chairs
With The People
   & the parades of parades
   & the uniforms of death all look the same to me,
Ole Magyar/  the hungarians died for freedom in 1956
& you are selling ours with your blank face in 1966
Ole Mayor Locher
   you aint even smart enough to be a bad guy
   & the parades of parades of death
   whisper in the marching    marching
   of the      4th Reich     America
        UBER      ALLES

         for allen ginsberg

manifesto fragment & poem for-the one-eyed children

dreams of non-paranoid paranoia it will all work out in the end
but i keep thinking ill be one of the dead/

did i put that into my head?

my conclusions are never related to the information devoured/or
                        i eat WORDS IDEAS VISIONS
                        in an attempt to grasp sumthing
                        to communicate
                (there is no music in this country
                all my thoughts turn into myths
for instance, a chinese holy man just appeared on the curtains
& what Antonin Artaud proved was "If you're really where its at"
you can turn shock therapy into a psychedelic experience/ & if
you overindulge you get friedbrains & that freaks up yr brain
waves for a while.
    if you're ultra-cool you can control yr psychiatrist
& he'll turn you on at regular intervals, on the other hand ONE
mistaken ride on his brain waves & you may end up like him/ exce
pt he has the money & you don't. he can afford to let you pay him
to maintain his myth & that is the real basis of your unreality,
all you get is the pussy which you cant accept becuz you havent
paid for it / the thang becomes unreal until you can buy yr way
out of the mass myth
State illusion...But it is still money that keeps him out of
the State Institutions / Physically that is...THE POETS MYTH IS
PORTABLE The Myth of Freedom is Portable...Pocket Ra is Portable

     WE ARE ALL LOCKED UP/ in credit cunt, behind the bars of the
conservative alcoholic bank book, in advertising supermarket food
prisons/ Our Bodies are Spirit Vaults..BREAK THE SEAL by osmosis
along the dotted lines on the top of yr head FREEDOM FOR THE
SPIRIT the bodies tomb doors are locked from the outside
This is called Living In A World Of Ignorance
THE BEGINNING is learning to move about freely within yr own tomb
dont look outside there is nothing but the wrathful cardboard
deities of the T.V.Myth.
                    WHAT IS FREEDOM FOR THE SPIRIT?
its like driving a go cart in a parma supermarket & HELL/YAMA
is being pursued by a Lawrence Welk smile at GREAT NORTHERN
SHRIEK...THE SUPERMARKET SUTRA...& the small tantric sermons
of the drive-in auto-mobile ashram-strobescopic flickerings of
limp-sex films...a teeny bopper who is dry thinks she is a
tantric Kwan-Yin trying to mother love & worshiping the motorcycle
OSIRIS his phallus lost in the dawn - drive-in sex at the gas
station GAS?    OIL?   GROPE? mechanical hands grope you in your
auto as you are gassed & oiled & later annointed at the drive-in
reading The Perfumed Garden by the light of the glove compartment
                        I KEEP TELLING
MYSELF, to take more drugs so i will be more coherent/ i keep
telling myself to leap like a flame from my window//i am afraid
to be the first assassination in Cleveland, everyone will think
it was the drugs (i rarely took) perhaps i should have...)

Allen/ the bell me&the dragon lady bought in detroit or the
toledo art museum hidden in the turquiose scarabs/ i gave it to
you after you read at the AMASA STONE CHAPEL - chanted mantras-
shot us full of light & the bell rings saying THUS i dont want
to be paranoid but other than you, no one ever told me how to
LOVE a Vacuum, Allen you may not be as holy as Jesus & the fat
funk brahmans of India, but you are certainly among the most holy
& sacred men in this desert..allen..i dont want to start a cult
they do not sell meat tenderizer for the dawn cock & last night
i skoffed several lifetimes of snatch as a yoga practice -
turned on people just telling then how to function in the Love
Underground - the catacombs of america are full of the songs of
the skull sung in gothic bathrooms - i beleive there is merit in
taking a good shit - THIS a first creative act is the first step
to being reborn -- An act of love

(it came & swallowed all my words)

How did we fall
for the myth of Ulysses murdering
    the ONE-EYED child
when he sez he is NO MAN
he wasnt kidding
             Ulysses is an animal
a george orwell cartoon movie of the bullshit pig
& the Babylonians & the Assyrians & our whole
        disease culture is based on these
proud to murder those giants with One EYE/
Were they the original gods
if i open the window in my head
will they kill me?
how many survived    waiting     hiding
centuries piled on centuries waiting
   for the Day of Love to arrive & instead
they are greeted by the facist princes &
                          the war lords
eisenhower, trujillo, batista etc etc etc the
names always spell / IMPOTENT BRAIN WAVES &

             part I

              for w.e. wyatt

                    Acapulco lips

the dragon of winged lions & the ch'i-lin
racing in sum sort of mind game - i cant see this
the words are just falling out of the pen

the ch'i-lin has the body of a deer
  on my homemade postcard he carries a holy man
the ch'i-lin has the feet of a horse
  on my homemade postcard the words say
 the ch'i-lin has the tail of an ox
  & walks off the card into the living room
  carrying a holy man

it is 10 years since the silence was broken
  like a bird that appears only in times of
We made our plans carefully/first in the 5th century B.C.
   and worked - making revisions in the text as time
   pretended to move around us/
in ceylon - the 8th century - we painted our dreams
   drank tea & watched the oceans lap our shores
   no one knew or knows our number

when we moved it was as a mountain mist
   & there were rumors that we hid in the valleys
   & wore animal masks in death dances
   & meanwhile we planned the motion of fire in water
our motions in silence

a gesture at the sky to keep track of our years
   we didnt bother when they preferred to run from their
   shadows                           i think it was the
11th century someone noticed 100,000 dead in a dream
& we knew that in their fear they would attempt to end all
shadows        &      we made our plans

when they invented the radio we laughed at how slow it was
& raced the waves as the ocean pressing our shores

the last i remember is 1890 we kissed the books and
smiled at the mountains moving away - not knowing what to say
              i was to be reborn here
            & you were to be reborn there
            & that was that

Now in the 20th century there are many small fires burning
       what do you think they will do when they discover
       they cannot destroy our light
and when we meet them at the gates
laughing/as the mountains move away.

     R. E. Vision #8 / part II   - for art kleps

an exodus in autumn/the white tiger has returned
the thunder & lightening is a shock for 100 miles

AK of the AdriondAKs : the SPINing concepts frighten me
  it is sad to be a dreamer,unable to dream
                  a lover unable to love
                  a builder denied materials
  ALL Three rowed out to sea in a seive
  gone,gone,gone to the other shore/
  landed on the other shore, SVAHA!


oh well/ if the government wants to live on a war economy
i guess we can give them a war---------i feel a dream
death approaching, the anxiety is a bitch.
               AMERICA WAKE UP!
  if you knew the price you will pay for this    small
  WAR ECONOMY                NATION OF DEATH     prophecy
  Worse than worshiping the golden calf you
  are killing for it
                    consider the weight of yr possessions
                    america, twice this weight you will
                    carry when you die
for the innocent and pure of heart
i am raising the flags/ a warning of storms
Be Prepared to GO HOME LAMBS

i do not have the courage to say
this may be your last sacrifice

they will not weep on wall street
until it is too late & the tears have no meaning

there is no reason to play with death
this is not your country
when i smelled love burning/ i cried
& NOW i smell the horse of the Angel of Death

go home lambs

you are trying to build
a temple in a graveyard
YOU/have years to plan,   my days are numbered
LAUGH at my fears and ignore my love
yet love & fear are the only wings to move on

when you have visited your own death
everyday is the last
                    GO HOME LAMBS
let yr children be born in the sun
"this country is insane"
                    GO HOME LAMBS
in the world of the spirit one does not
lose what he has gained.



Return to d.a.levy home page

Return to Light and Dust Poets. | Return to Kaldron On-Line

Cleveland: The Rectal Eye Visions was originally published in a limited edition of 126 copies by press : today : niagara, edited by D.R. Wagner (Niagara Falls, 1966). It was reprinted in UKANHAVYRFUCKINCITIBAK, edited by T.L. Kryss (Cleveland: Ghost Press, 1967). Sections 1 and 2 were reprinted in Zen Concrete & Etc. edited by Ingrid Swanberg (Madison, Wisconsin: Ghost Pony Press, 1991).

This is a cooperative presentation of
Ghost Pony, Kaldron On-Line, and
Light and Dust Mobile Anthology of Poetry.


by d.a.levy

PART ZERO - Celebration With Rada Drums

only ten blocks away
buildings burned - perhaps burning now
the august night broken by sniper fire
police men bleeding in the streets
a sniper surrenders (perhaps out of ammunition)
Gun Jammed?
someone sed he was framed in a doorway
like a picture - his hands in the air
when they shot him -

only ten blocks away
from my quiet apartment
with its green ceramic buddhas
& science fiction books
unread skin magazines to be cut up
for collages

only ten blocks away
from my total helplessness
from my boredom enforced by the state
they are looting stores
trying to get televisions
so they can watch the riots
on the 11 pm news

the national guard jeeps patrol
the streets again
the army-green trucks with the
giant white star on the side
moving in the summer lightning

i cd tell you partly
why it happened
but you wouldnt believe me

like in Milwaukee
during a reading
just after i said
"this is a paranoid poem - written when i was
experimenting with paranoid states of consciousness,
but im not there anymore"
& a young girl sat writing
"shows paranoid symptoms"
probably for her psychology class
not hearing me at all

i cld try to tell you
about the hopeless despair
ingrained in ghetto walls
& police brutality or police stupidity
or police reality is more than just words
to define situation
by students looking for a cause.
the situations exist & continue
quietly in the dark while the
protest goes on in daylight -
both unheard.

the police try to protect
the banks - and everything else
is secondary

during the riots
i watched the news
& didnt pick sides for a change

i just sat wondering about all
the living room revolutionaries
safe in the suburbs
who cheered everytime someone
was shot or a building went up
in smoke

ten blocks away
it was real
thousands of tourists



"east Cleveland has more history than Cleveland"
she sed as if to pump that additional piece
of information into my de-generating energy
centers like a gas station attendant
i couldnt get it across to anyone
how tired i was
just writing poems for tomorrow
or writing poems for myself
a form of suicide

since it all began in cleveland anyway
& thats where the shit belongs
east cleveland
with its ancient city manager
city commisioners
is not like cleveland, where the
mayor & councilmen suck money from
the federal govt & cosa nostra & syndicates
it doesnt really matter
what you call them
as long as you know
who to pay
& who to take from
& never let the little people know
whats happening
if theres any problems
just blame it on the communists
or the john birchers
or the black militants
or the illiterate hippies
depending on who yr talking to
at the time
"east cleveland doesnt have any problems"
and in the near future

if they ever organize
the fine arts council, even
the poets will be kept in line
like they are in cleveland
its so easy to convince poets
what poetry is
and what it isnt
& everyone knows
sleeping with the muse
is only for young poets
after you've been kept impotent
by style & form & words like "art"
after being published by the RIGHT publishers
and having all the right answers
after youve earned the right to call yrself
a poet      yr dead
& lying on yr back
drinking ceremonial wine, while
the muse, who is always a young girl
with old eyes into the universe
suddenly remembers necrophilia
is an experience shes had before
& shes not interrested
in straddling corpses anymore

You wonder why your kids are wearing
flowers in their hair
& laughing in the park
its the bitch herself
eating spanish fly candy
whispering in their ears
because, even if they cant fully understand
what shes saying - they know how to listen
they know how to read Look magazine
between the lines & they still believe

east clevelands history is NOW
at this moment
suspended in the 4th dimensional cinerama
movie we pretend is living     NOW
when i am wondering if the Indians
traveling along the Lake Trail had as much
trouble getting a good piece of ass
as i do

(excuse me, my internal dakini
you know 1 love you spiritually
write my poems for you, but 1 like to
keep my fingers in something wet to remind
me where i am
                      i dont want to end up like
                      Kenneth Patchen - hiding in
                      California - an exile
                      Pound & Artaud locked up
                      in the past - Poe a lush
                      a paranoid lush!

lady you have to be realistic
sending all yr poets to the looney bin
aint helping the profession very much
your blue hair in the wind
& yr eyes full of diamonds
your trembling neon thighs
spread in my mind
while i sat in a quiet apartment
on Savannah Ave waiting for
my teenage wife-mistress to come
home from work after the night shift
waitress on a death ship restaurant

a greek Yorikke with its $1.09 specials
of shishkabob, lambstew, barbequed chicken
porterhouse steak, veal cutlet, spaghetti
etc all tasting the same
i sat at home
while downstairs, the hillbilly dog
barked into the blackness everytime
a piece of newspaper rubbish
or gumwrapper shuttled
across the sidewalk
i sat wondering
if she was getting pulled into some
quiet driveway & getting raped
while i dreamed of love & peace
& dreamed of strange women
in erotic costumes knocking on the door
whispering with wet lips & flaming roses
between their thighs     instead
every young girl     old girl
i ever met wanted me to be her brother
a friend, "fuck that shit"
i'd scream at the shadows
maybe my teenage wife-mistress is
getting raped on the way home from work &
ive got to go make a movie
& i'd leave
the empty apartment
head for the restaurant
down Savannah & Alleghenny & Northfield
to Euclid Ave for a cup of coffee
very disappointed
to find my old lady still there
working late
nothing exciting ever happens
except when the neighbors moved
every 2 or 3 months
without paying the rent
& the landlord would ask us
about them
we never got to know
our neighbors very well

we decided to move
after some young buck
followed my old teenage wife-mistress
home one night (it could have been me
but the wife
still being Christian at that time
i didnt want anyone to get hurt
trying to rape her

no more walking
to meet her
in the sun
or in the snow
or the dark nights
when the street lights
turned everything funny shades
and the sparks from apartment
incinerators leapt into the
polluted air like fireworks

no more back porch
with a window for the siamese
to climb out at night & wander
the streets terrified that
some big tom might
kick the shit
out of him

so many boring nights
quiet halloween parties on Strathmore
smoking the benevolent herb & drinking scotch
experimenting with giant vats full of
home made soup
we made soup
you wouldnt beleive
just soup
nothing to shaft
but the 17 yr old
soon to be my wife
for mutual survival
& then the year & a half on Savannah
finishing off the last of the peyote
gave us both belly-aches
& no pictures in our heads
popping acid or morning glory seeds
until the law sed "fuck yr god in the mouth"
& sealed the door to the universe
with a cross
& the law
the downtown cleveland narks
& the city councilmen
a bunch of transvestites
dancing in the streets
shouting and giggling "We are God, We are God"
I'm a levy & a scorpion
& a poet     i dont need drugs
i just wanted to be like everyone else
& everyone i knew was taking drugs
everyone i knew was reading the P.D.R.
& developing psychosomatic illnesses
just to get pills
any pills

what else was there?
jacking off to the commercials
the old lady nibbling yr fly
during the food commercials
the television nibbling at yr fly
until the old lady returns

the television - just another drug
good old sub-urban life
anyways, i'm glad they passed the laws
too many young kids trying to turn me on
young girls want to come to the house
want to bring grass - write letters
wanting to be my friends
celebrity hunters who want to visit
the local poetry ashram - fuck that shit
i feel like an underground movie
that was burned by Savonarola

im still looking
for a horny white coven queen
who can come in her mind
and let me come with her

last time i took acid
i wanted to get liberated
almost dropped dead
decided i didn't want to get liberated
                    that way
too clinical
sat down & watched the walls melt
& turn into flowing     swaying
throbbing yantras     designs
all visual stuff
bored the piss out of me
everyone else wanted to ball as much
as i did except they were all afraid
so we just watched the pictures
jump out of the walls

im tired of being the instigator
three days later returned to
normal vision 20/30 or 20/60 variable
depending on how bored i am

working out the problems of the universe
thinking weird thoughts
writing paranoid poems about the police
nothing to do except
change the kitty litter, empty the garbage
nothing to do except go to Adeles bar
the last religious frontier
& watch it be destroyed by the
University property-mongers

daytime in east cleveland
the sun breaking thru the
mullberry leaves
                              thru the
                  window of our
new apartment on Wymore

the sun softly thundering
across our new oriental carpets
from the Salvation army
on 55th Street

Everyone Sez,
"write a poem about east cleveland"
yah man, wouldn't that be cute!



Most of my thirst
was quenched by answers
i brought myself
still, i suppose
i never could have found them
without that spot of light
on Euclid Ave.

you could not get
a good cup of coffee
at The Well
no matter
how hard you tried
or how long
you waited

i wasted a full three years
thru mediocre tea bags
dishwater coffee & hot chocolate
that stuck to the roof of yr mouth
just like climbing a mountain
          a Christian mountain
the Well was there to be conquered
except no one could find out
exactly what was happening there
or what its purpose was -

First the establishment tried to close
The Well because of the Beatniks - later
to be called Hippies & an ordinance was
passed saying you couldnt wear sandals
in east cleveland

Second it was the spades, as if those
young chicks were all going to drop
their pants at the sight of brown
skin - man, nobody was going to get into
those teenybops - and them teenybops
werent letting anyone in -
and rape is for kids
so nothing was happening

so Third it was the motorcycle outlaws
causing all the trouble - except it
never saw the trouble, i never saw a
goddamn pubic hair, i never had a cup of
decent coffee, but 1 did a lot of waiting
& heard a lot of guitars crying in pain -

i dont know why they wanted the Well closed
but I'm glad they did it
i may have spent my whole life
waiting for something to happen

it died an ordinary death
when the Press Bar decided to EXPAND
& the nebulous coffeehouse
never did turn into a nova
it just got replaced by a couple
of pool tables & now no one worrys
whos getting laid by who
just so long as those long haired kids
dont sing anymore of pete seegers old songs
or songs of Joan Baez or smoke parsley
or take fake amphetamine made out of flour

happening on Sat.Night - goddamn
i feel like I'm stuck in the middle
of a hick town - this is supposed
to be one of the countries biggest
Grade D movies on witchcraft & only three
known covens in the county
most of the ohio covens supposed
to be in Cinncinnati
experimental college movies
acid-flicks to non-acid audiences
Still - a unique experience
sometimes a good movie
allen ginsbergs smiling face
continually appearing
Is that hip?
Kuchar Brothers, Peter Bergman labyrinths
no movies by Clevelanders who stayed in
Cleveland, no movies about the
Cleveland Underground . . .

the continental theatre
where i pass out copies of the Buddhist Oracle
to paranoid right-wingers who are convinced
it is a commy publication
no one understands what the paper is all about
i dont understand what its all about

lot of nice looking women tho
i never laid any of them
every Sat. night     waiting
looking into eyes
trying to find someone i lost
More than 5,000 years ago
was it Assryia? Babylon? Atlantis?
the Lady with blue hair
& eyes full of stars
running across the sand -
in my mind while every Sat. night
i was passing out papers.

Running back to the Well
the narcotics dept is watching
they are convinced there is
underground drug traffic operated
by the french syndicate going on
between the coffeehouse & the theatre
A Communist plot - Camels packing
opium & hash & owsleys unlimited
underneath the bar -
in little girls snatches
Interpol aint going to talk
they'll blame in on the Mafia
if anyone gets caught
i keep looking
for that drug traffic
for my own purposes
while 1 was waiting
for a decent cup of coffee
as a cover up - it never happened!
just that puke faced suburban living

William Burroughs - rescue me!
forget that!
Michele Ray - Yael Dayan - rescue me!

I'm sitting in the shadows of the Well
old memories left in my head from the
days when it was born & i took the Rapid
from W. 25th & Lorain to Superior or
Windermere & walked in the slush of late
autumn to wait in the coffeehouse shadows
watching it grow - inhale & exhale
listening to Miles Davis music inside my head

Now i sit at home & fly with the Jefferson Airplanes
earphones taped to my head - listening to Judy Collins
Country Joe & the Fish - Buddhist Chants - Pink Floyd -
Richard Farina's ghost - classical spanish music
my skull cracking wide open
& the last of my brains & collected words
floating up to the ceiling

it was much simpler when i walked
in the summer to the North Branch Library
& couldnt find books on Tantracism, Dadaism,
Buddhism, Egypt, contemporary poetry -
there was a lot of Americana Propaganda
i was very disappointed - 1 really wanted
to study - instead i sat away the summers
trying to become as soft as the trees
trying to understand where they
got their faith in life
growing - growing patiently
leaping toward the sun

There was a time when everyone
wanted to be The leader & get something
going - but then it was decided,
it was more christian to serve
rather than lead     so the place was full
of lieutenants waiting for a captain
to present a plan of action
he never appeared
or maybe we missed him
thats a cleveland neurosis
i dont understand what
its doing in this
changing suburb
maybe its contagious
maybe the spades
moving up Hayden Ave
will bring a leader
with them

the john birchers visited The Well
one night waving their curious
form of patriotism - the 16 yr old
kids laughed them out -
the young trots also talking at
The Well, the 16 yr olds either went
to sleep or got nervous & left
to wander the streets

THE WELL a real liberal coffeehouse
died a quiet death - june first 1968
    Recklessly In Naive Peace

Lenore Kandel, J.D. Kuch, save me!

PART THREE - i guess it was her sister

Dream one: ground zero 2 - defined as
      traveling thru conscious space -
      when you reach an extremely dense
      area of consciousness - the mind
      (a mobile zero) visualizes the
      conscious mass as light patterns
      or as light ....

Dream Two: a thought is matter -
      what form of energy is used to
      create a Thought?
                Thinking is the organ-
      izing of thoughts or thought
      patterns - thing in not energy.
      Thinking uses a form of energy.
      What form of energy is used to
      create the original thoughts?
      Try to become THAT!

Dream Three: chaos of pictures
      living the giant painless movie
      waiting for wisdom that is
      supposed to arrive with age -
      some senile motherfucker told
      me that - i didnt believe him
      for a moment
      but decided to wait
      until i could find some way
      to not wait without becoming
      an instant nova

hello astronaut
no     im not a firefly
no im not a flying saucer
in the distance
I'm a self contained unit
of consciousness waiting
to be reborn - can you
hear me? can you
hear me?

At The East Cleveland Congregational Church Dance
doing a benefit for the murdered coffeehouse on
115th - & the outlaws showing up with most of the
money at the door & getting very bored -
God's Children - The Gringos - Slave Makers etc
a liberal church - i was very bored - watching
for those eyes --- & found her sister
                    "the empty / handed magi
                    breaking the snow / for words"
to d------

you dance (barely moving)
in the basement of the church
someone wearing colors
picks you up & carrys you
around in his arms
          & for a moment
lines of flesh are exposed

for (a poets small) eternity
my eyes captured & photographed
your moving figure

(that picture - still moving
hangs in the sacred galleries
of my mind)

(that picture of you moving like
a tantric angel - secured in the
cathedral of my skull)

i ask myself if it is only with
a poets eye & for reasons of
aesthetics that i single you out
from the shadows

later you stand at my side
like a holy spirit radiating
light & we exchange words
we do not want - pretend a
game we dont like

and ask each other
"What do i want?"

"What do i want?"

lady, what do you want?
when you are offered even
the unknown boundaries of the skull
you dance away & pretend you did
not hear
you disappear like a swallow
on the wind - dress in pale blue
and fade into the sky as if you
never existed
            it almost seems
as if you refuse to share the
things you ask for

    "the young woman who went to play
    with the dogteeth of summer"
              george seferis

no one even noticed
you slipped into the anemic church
even more dangerous than the
angel of death -
i looked for you
wrote magical poems
that didnt work
found you for a few moments
outside the unitarian church
weeks later
sat in the car with you
bottle of beer held between
your thighs
wanting our spirits to touch
our fingers & our lips to melt together
on 82nd street stoned on amphetamine
i let you slip away again

what did you want?

your blond hair for a moment in adeles
the heavy golden light around you
lady you were beautiful & i didnt
know why!

a month later
you crept into my head
while i was sleeping
i tried to throw you out
& you just sed it was
a nice place to be"
funny no one ever noticed before

my first non-paranoid telepath
experience - left me hysterical
for weeks. . . . im still hysterical
dont have the answers
i just write these
prose? poems? & tell myself
like i told her when i was
in Milwaukee & our minds
touched again
maybe it will be better
for the next generation lady
your son
can read the poems & find out
how we were murdered
for 5,000 years
let him know
there was no place for us
except moving or becoming

you can watch the ones who
didnt move fast enough
they are dying
& they are called     Poets
people used to be afraid of poets
now they dont listen anymore
so everything is all right (?)
lady - you were
beautiful the night
you sat in the theatre
very tired & disappeared
when 1 wanted you
so badly
& didnt know why

everyone sez
"write a poem about east cleveland"

east cleveland
i want to leave you
i am tired of being one of
the local bearded noveltys
i am tried of being lost
in your boredom
i wont even let the
television nibble at my fly
no more TV Trances
you sons of bitches
trying to sell the light
hologram miracles

"its a cheaper brand of light
it doesnt last as long as the
real thing, but the people
will never know the difference"

with its unseen altar of skulls
    you people who laughed
    watching us die
& pretending it was because
we were young . . . .

east cleveland EXPAND
your internal environment
let in the sun
i am too young to commit
suicide for yr amusement

you open the doors
to let me get lost
in yr bureaucratic maze
you freeze my mind
with yr peasant intuition
your intellectual superstitions

in the background i sense
clannish emasculated
masonic mafia rites

worse than chicken
sacrificing voodoo cults

worse than all the ego-inflated
occult masters of white & black

your misdirected psychopathic
concepts of brotherhood

worse than all the sick murders
of children thruout history

east Cleveland, 1 am not even
talking to you - or about you
perhaps thru you

"one hand washes the other"
thats what a white racist sed
after giving a friend
of mine a ride

every time i washed hands
with the county
i walked away
feeling a little dirtier


CHILDRENS SONG for Patrick O'Malley

in east Cleveland the police say hello to me
in Cleveland they ask for my I.D.
on the west side, even if the police have
known me for years, they still ask for my I.D.
as if there were two of me
both with the same face
but one without his
fucking draft card

the aliens are stealing
our forms,     i guess
i think the east cleveland police
are nice guys
but i still cant ask them for directions,
not certain where im going . . . .


PART FOUR - Forest Hills Park

The mailman tells me he was a writer
but he decided he liked to eat
so much for how America keeps her
writers in line
if i have any courage
next week i'll kill myself
every week i tell myself that
& find something new to write about
or find a new way to say what I sed
last week

the last medieval frontier
gothic ohio
a catholic whorehouse -
guardians of the light - BULLSHIT!
Nicene copyright - Bullshit!

secret ouspenskian groups
hidden in the suburbs - scientology Level 9
Cayce Atlantians - BULLSHIT
everyone using the groups
to escape their response-ability
for Reality Now
poetry - the last round with
mental dysentery before
confronting the Reality of Oneself
in relation to the reality of the
poetry - the greatest bullshit of all!

Reality Is,

Mister Donut - Luxemburg Motel
Tujaques Bar - Scotts Hardware
Glass & mirror Co. (My friend
still in jail - i dont know how
to get him out - thats called
"poets power" - thats how
America keeps her poets in line)
Sinclair, Atlantic, Sunoco Gas Stations
more gas stations than restaurants
a friendly town
if you are just passing thru
yes, $20,000 is a fair fine for
a jaywalking ticket, sorry, i
was thinking about fucking &
i didnt see the light
you can have my drivers license too
i cant afford to park in this city

i remember old wine & pot & methedrine
parties up the Superior Ave Hill
stoned - staring at Forest Hills Towers
billions of dollars for apartments
they let one negro move in & they think
they are integrated - reading john updike &
look magazine & ladies home journal
three blocks away - people on welfare

you stand up on top of the Apartment
Building & pretend you can see the city
then you dont have to see, the young
colored kids in rags or the high school
greasers robbing stores so they can
dress decently
you smoke pot & look at the stars
until the police throw you out
so you dont get beat up by somebody
who doesnt smoke pot
the good citizens are all watching TV
for years & years       while
jungian mass subconscious traditions
& sub-cultures are transmitted telepathically
all the young heads
running around the park stoned
convinced no one has ever done it hefore

its all been done before

i know people who take dope
and watch TV - no morals!
mixing mass media & dope
fuck that shit
i cant get out of ohio
Ingrid Swanberg, Aileen Goodson, HELP!

FOREST HILLS PARK full of stoned poets
who couldnt write their hideous visions
of medieval Ohio,
folksingers strangling on their unheard
protest songs, joining hands in the
darkness of the mind to forget the
poverty & lack of co-operation &
pretend for a while
looking at the stars
just like the people in The Towers
remembering past lives
because this lifetime offered so little
getting stoned rather than step on their
invisible brothers
smoking the peaceful weed
in the afternoon & giggling
at children on swings
cosmic love - so much easier
cleaner than accepting any responsibility
-in the old days
people got stoned
to forget for a few moments

today being stoned
is a way of life
as crippling as television
& christianity or newspaper worship
and the 9 to 5 assembly line
its 1968 & the assembly line pot smokers
are here     I'M AFRAID of the beautiful people
they are crazy with their long hair - they are
crazy and they are irresponsible assholes just
like their parents - they dont want to make guns
they dont want to kill - woe to the american

McDonalds has done more for integration
than the Federal Govt... someone should give
them a grant. negroes caucasions mongolians
hippies (a different race) economic integration
cultural integration, everyone after those
16 ¢ent hamburgers & 20¢ milkshakes

the Superior Ave Shopping Center
          A BIG NOTHING
the Outpost surrounded by funeral homes

people living 4 in a room while those
old mansions flash neon signs
safe passage to the other shore
give undertakers acid & the funeral
parlors will all close down - give
the mansions back to the people

Rockefeller Train Depot or something
a local landmark, traditional piece
to give one that sense of historical
perspective necessary to survive &
grow - to insure stability
it was torn down & replaced by a car lot

in east Cleveland
i have been accepted
by people who do not
know how to accept me
by people who do not know
who i am

i am now a full-fledged
initiate to the secret cult
The Sub-Urban Society of Death
human sacrifices before
the altars of the tube

i am hungry
altho i have visited the
refrigerator 176 times today
i want to eat the television
becoming the tube
doesnt satisfy the
hungry animals inside me
i cant communicate with
the damn thing - it just
sez "little dot patterns
as described by mcluhan"

ive seen old people
talking to the machine
it never answered me
i am still hungry

collecting stamps
doesnt satisfy my hunger
i dont want to eat the
stamps though
(i like to smoke grass & look at them)
if i try to become the
stamp books, all they respond
with is more mcluhan shit & also
some crap about einsteinian relativity

i am still hungry!
theres nothing to do
except change the kitty litter
empty the garbage ---

The death ship restaurant now only
a block away - i go & have coffee
maybe 3,4,10 times a day
there is a strange sense of border
freedom there - a clean feeling like
when you leave the U.S.
i watch the young greek cashiers tits
a beautiful set of jugs
full round ass     watch
the gold cross dangling over
the tits - listen to Zorba The Greek
played by a Mexican Band on the
juke box - knowing, she never read
i sit at the table sometimes holding
hands with my tantric grandmother
more sex energy in her fingers
than all the cunts in east cleveland
the palm of her hand
an orange flower of warm energy
(if people knew what went on
between our hands on the tabletop!)

i drink coffee
rap with friends
dream of fucking all the waitresses
not because i want to
theres just nothing else to do
it isnt safe to think in this country
just write poems
read books
no place to grow
just sit back - drink coffee
damage chromosomes
watch tho old world die
& wonder what tomorrow
will be like already knowing
ill be an outlaw there too

they are waiting for me in the future
but then, ill be someone else
screaming in the darkness
sitting staring
thru the paintings on the walls
lost in the maze of mirror reflections
not certain where i am
or who i am
i quietly ask myself who i am
& the voice in my head reminds me
"one of the sons of light, reborn"
fuck that shit - i mean
what does that mean
dreaming of past lives
the great teacher murdered
for teaching about the sun
just like Rev. King
murdered - The Kennedys - murdered!
symbols of the light - turned off

& the telepath
who rested in my head once
& disappeared

Vajra Yogini Help!
Papa Legba - open the gates
i dont want to die in Ohio anymore!

I am tired of watching my brothers
waste their lives fighting the draft
to die in illegal wars
i am tired of being torn-up inside
each time i see one of my brothers
replaced by a gold star in a window

i am tired of writing & speaking
to television vegetables
immune to multiple-reality systems
innoculated via mass media propaganda vaccines

i am tired of reading about people
starving in china, india, the ozarks
in the inner city slums

i dont understand theoretical economics
my world is full of people & spirits
i want to go where there are still
some flashes of light
my world is full of imaginary women
with neon - electric flowers of love

i want to go where i dont have to
pretend 1 am not alone


PART FIVE - talking to the wind

someone sed i should write
something constructive
about east cleveland

get me a passport - that's constructive!
send me to a free country
deport me to Milwaukee
send me to the city of light
or tell me how to get there
& then - lets go!
im afraid to go alone --

i dont see any other way
this city within me can survive
and I am already too old to be yr future
you are always too safe
you are always too late
everyone wants to be jesus
everyone wants to be martyred
everyone wants to be a bodhisattva
without getting their hands dirty
it doesnt seem to matter anymore
if the cause is just

you do not know how to gamble and win

you spend all yr time
engaged in "meaningful dialogue"
that never materializes into
anything meaningful

you waste all my time
waiting for you to clarify
things for me - you dont give
me a choice - you dont give me
a chance to decide

you call yrself adults
yet when you finally act
it is out of frustration
you feel yr imaginary power slipping

you will not confront yrself
so you leap to the aid of others
very clumsy     like children
eating the sun or poets torn apart
by internal frustrations
like madmen & outlaws
lashing out to destroy what they
do not understand
you put on yr creepy 12 year old
naive armour and bring me yr
cliches of wisdom that even
you do not understand

how many people have asked me
"What do you want?"
& then when i told them
they walked away
not understanding or afraid
to understand
"meaningful dialogue?"

like "unarmed confrontation"
i want to see the day when
the city confronts me openly
or sincerely for something other
than information
          "I can open the doors for you"
the voice sez & forgets to tell you
the magic words, the words of power
that stop you from having the door
slam you in the face

i can open my own doors
and get them slammed in my face
who needs help!

i cant even read most of my poems
in this country - i dont want to read them!
you ask what i want
and you are afraid to hear
what i am afraid to say

i wanted to say
something about love
but i dont think 1 could take
any of yr paternal hogshit

i really wanted to say
something about love
& the chance to grow into
the adult you never had the
courage to become
but i dont think i have the
time to hear all your freudian
and jungian psychology defining
what an adult is

so 1 wanted to say something
about love & instead     ill
just say, id just Iike you
to quit putting my friends
in jail
& pay me for a poem
once in a while & quit offering me
so many non-paying opportunities
ive given you so much free
information i feel like the
welfare dept

(in Cleveland we got busted
for giving away poems like
the welfare dept
the city officials were
gagging on soybean & peanut
butter poems - very strange!)

i wanted to say something
about east cleveland
but it just walked away -


PART SIX - a small funeral
                    "the only difference
                    between matadors & poets
                    is that one flirts with death
                    and the other with insanity"
                                  rik davis
theyve almost all lied to you
including me 1 suppose
"the poet gambles with insanity"
thats ridiculous - we are all insane
it is up to you to wake up the poets
lost in their eriee pasts
the poet just eats & sleeps & pisses
          & farts & shits & writes
          poems - is that insanity
thats a zen master on phenobarbital!

its the businessman, the salesman
who gambles with insanity - the
doctor playing medicine - the printer
the bomb-maker & the man
who makes donuts & bagels from 9 to 5
          awake at 6 AM
          driving a truck
          across the city
to put in day after day
in the same meaningless
dance routine
          without even time
          to ask why
          poets lost in the luxury of being
able to question       being
able to beat their head against the wall
& say "well its my job"
& they already know - they dont want the answers

ah but that rapid transit matador
being gored each day with invisible
horns - internally
& business transactions that didnt come
& the CTS cowboy sitting silently
trying to get a job - any job
knowing he'll die of TB at 65
or cancer and unable to find a shred of
meaning in the whole game
ah the sweet insanity of being
able to put away each hopelessly identical day
while the matador gets a rose
from a fat little greasy teenybopper
in the crowd
he gives her the bulls ears later in bed
& a horny poet with poor vision
cleans the picture up for you
to help you dream
but now you have television
& you dream too much

the garbage man in the morning
knows     his own reality
garbagemen never get shot during riots
perhaps they are the real holymen
with an aura of protection
their reality - the shit in yr
bedroom wastebasket

you have to be a zen master
to be a garbageman
& poets lie when they manage to find
some object of beauty in the garbage heap

garbage is garbage
poetry is emotional garbage - leftovers
and beautiful things are just dreams
but now you have television
to help you dream

the soulless men
bullfighters of insignificant stockrooms
mindless phantoms who never possessed a spirit
to gamble with
men with high school television dreams
who cross themselves in rituals of death
who whisper "jesus" before dueling
with their competitors each day
playing war games - becoming policemen
gambling with insanity
          they drive their autos
laugh at hippies drink on fridays
go bowling shit on God each day & they die
& they die & they die alone
wrapped in flags
proud of their insanity
& the academic poets
write their cleaned-up dreams for you
pretend it is all beautiful
sitting in a bar
the alcohol confessional

& everyday i sit here
trying to become one of you
after another
trying on those high school dreams
for size
it doesnt work
you dont fit me

as a poet i try to learn
how to remain human
despite technology
& there is no one to learn from
i am still too young to
be quiet & contemplative

i dont want to become a golden ager
cowering before the tube in religious awe

businessmen on amphetamine ego trips
telling me about their latest coup
i visit churches & temples & ask questions
& i am handed some meaningless book
or pamphlet
it seems as if there is no
one to answer my questions but me

a hideous responsibility
with worse implications

my peer group?

goodby television
im going back inside my head

my wife & i
take an evening walk
around the block
          (are we that old)
there is something beautiful
about her     something
some dream thing in the cloudless sky

i know my dreams are unreal
but they are my dreams

on hot summer nights
we hate each other
& it is beautiful . . .

                                                  august 1968
                                                  e.cleveland ohio



                    peace & awareness are
                    like two small birds
                    trying to leave the planet
                    because they are tired of dying

                    im not advocating anything

Go to d.a.levy home page

Return to Light and Dust Poets | Return to Kaldron On-Line

Copyright © 1991 by Ghost Pony Press

This is a cooperative presentation of
Ghost Pony Press
Kaldron On-Line and
Light and Dust Mobile Anthology of Poetry



the bells of the Cherokee ponies

by d.a.levy

i thought they were
wind chimes
in the streets at night

with my young eyes
i looked to the east
and the distant ringing
of ghost ponies
rose from the ground

Ponies Ponies Ponies

(the young horse becomes
a funny sounding

i looked to the east
seeking buddhas to
justify those bells
weeping in the darkness

The Underground Horses
are rising

Cherokee, Delaware, Huron
we will return your land to you

the young horses
will return your land to you

to purify the land
with their tears

The Underground Horses
are rising

to tell their fathers

"in the streets at night
the bells of Cherokee ponies
are weeping."



d.a.levy home page

curated by Ingrid Swanberg, Karl Young,
and Karl Kempton

After becoming familiar with the work of d.a.levy, you'll probably realize that just about anything you can say about him will immediately call up its oposite, leading to mazes of seeming contradictions. For many people, particularly those who didn't know him or who read him superficially, he appears as an outlaw wild-man, hurling imprecations at the universe, and getting himself martyred in the process. Despite the element of truth in this, he was also deeply committed to a community of friends, and the author of some of the most beatific spiritual poetry of the time. You could see him as a warrior against repression and conformity, but perhaps other roles can strike deeper chords: his curses find parallels in the Book of Job, as his lyrics reprise The Psalms and The Song of Solomon, and his Jeremiads recall the prophet from whom the term derives. You could see him as a quietist scribe, patiently producing a Tantric Bible. You could also see him as a man who urgently needed to read his poetry to an attentive and engaged audience - in addition to such venues as coffee houses, he read to passers-by on the street, whether they wanted to listen or not. You could see him as a parapatetic monk, grimly following a weird and inescapable Dharma, and you could see him as a wise-ass looking for trouble. He could make grandiose claims, and at the same time claim that neither he nor anyone else had anything to say worth hearing. You could see him as a nihilist, seeking oblivion, or a mystic seeking a void which produces endless miracles, which in turn fit quite plainly into the flow of daily life. You could see him as a classic Beat, seeking adventure; brooding, phreaking, musing on boredom, cracking raunchy jokes, content when he had sufficient grass and sex. He found revelations in the larger-than-life social and political movements of the 1960s and in scraps of old newspapers, cheap cartoons, and the echoes of canonized poets and traditions. He could also see revelations as nothing more than cons. He listened carefully to the voices of the street; he also received messages through telepathy, from the spirit world, and through forms of altered consciousness. You could see him as a light philosopher, related to those of the Middle East and Medieval Europe, but one who extended dualism into hyperspace. He was the Patron Saint and Martyr of the American alternative press movement, and like all real saints, was not recognized as such, even by the many people who followed in his footprints. There are a lot of ways you could see him as a poet. But if you see him solely as any one of these, you haven't seen him at all. We feel that our job at this site is to give you as much access to the work as possible, in all its diversity, so that you can see past the stereotypes that obscured his work during the last year and a half of his life and those that have grown since his death.

Formally, you could see levy as a book artist - a poet who worked primarily with books in mind, which he usually produced himself. As a low-tech book worker, he remains unsurpassed in the second half of the 20th century. You could as easily see him as a lyricist, whose vocal intensity exfoliated into visual manifestations. Aside from the wonderful and exciting visual and aural dimensions of his poetry, this creates problems in presentation on the web and in print. Works such as The Tibetan Stroboscope can only be seen as visual poetry. With other works, this becomes less certain: levy worked deliberately with inexpensive and "liberated" papers, often exploring the aesthetic of rough mimeo and crude letterpress production, and this can be seen as inherent to the work. This makes our division somewhat arbitrary. But it's also both practical and provisional. In some of the "lexical" work, the lyric seems to take precedence over any visual concerns, and these seem appropriate to presentation in plain html format. As we go along, we may present some of these works in both html and graphics forms.

As much as levy has been disgracefully ignored since his death, he has had his torch-bearers. Ingrid Swanberg has been one of the most important of them, producing the only easily available print edition of his work in over a decade. In doing so, she carefully and deliberately worked with a book design best suited to library and popular sales to keep key works in circulation, although this has drawn criticism from some purists. It seems unlikely that some Micenas will come forward with the funds for a state of the art Swiss or French collotype edition that only collectors could afford. Outside that range of facsimile, Swanberg's edition remains a model in its own genre. You can order her edition through Ghost Pony Press: you'll find a link to the press at the bottom of this page.

Although this project has been in the works for two years and some of the poetry has been at this site for that long, this page went on-line, with total irony intended, on July 4, 1998, in anticipation of an independence day that would include people like d.a.levy.

- Karl Young



The Tibetan Stroboscope

(Previously unpublished)

posters advertising nothing
(Previously unpublished)

from The Buddhist 3rd Class Junkmail Oracle

Comments on the Acid Landscape


Short Poems:

the bells of the Cherokee ponies

roses that

sitting on a bench near TSQuare

Two Love poems from Grist

Jaywalking Blues

to jim lowell's goldfish

Longer Workings:

Selections from North American Book of the Dead

Suburban Monastery Death Poem

Cleveland: The Rectal Eye Visions

Essays and Commentary

by Gary Snyder, Karl Young, Ingrid Swanberg,
Alan Horvath, and D. r. Wagner

Poems For,To, and After

by t.l.kryss, Grace Butcher, bill bissett, will inman, D.R. Wagner,
rjs, Douglas Blazek, Kent Taylor, Ingrid Swanberg, Karl Young,
Russell Salamon, Johnathan Moore, and Luther Jett

d.a.levy bibliography
Compiled by Kent Taylor and Alan Horvath

Although the compilers tend to be modest, this bibliography
borders on the miraculous, given the dificulties presented by
a poet/publisher whose life was short and much of whose
publications were ephemeral. An aid in locating work written
and or published by levy, this bibliography should give
readers a sense of the range of levy's work and interestes.
The bibliography remains an ongoing and probably incompletable

Ghost Pony Press
Source for available work by d.a.levy in print form

Return to Light and Dust Poets. | Return to Kaldron On-Line

This is a cooperative presentation of
Ghost Pony, Kaldron On-Line, and
Light and Dust Mobile Anthology of Poetry.



The d.a. levy Bibliography - (A Work-In-Progress)

The d.a. levy Bibliography
(A Work-In-Progress)

This has been in the works for a while. To date, the most complete historical listing for d.a. levy's published work has been James Lowell's article entitled: "A Preliminary Checklist of the Writings of d.a. levy (1942 – 1968)" which appeared in the Kent State University publication, The Serif (Vol. 8, No. 4). Kent Taylor (whose diligence is the only reason this project is as complete as it is) and I have used this as a starting point to fill in any blanks as well as enhance the listings with additional historical data in an attempt to put levy's work in perspective for the people who have never seen the books.

When all the books are laid on the table, you can see a similarity between certain books which were published around the same time period. They have the same cover & page stock with a similar binding style. When levy ran out of that particular paper color or size, the next batch of chapbooks were printed on the next bundle of paper which dropped into his hands (whatever color & size that those reams happened to be). Also you can see a progression from letterpress to mimeograph to newsprint, each phase taking the process one step further.

As discussed in my other essay, "The Definitive Copy (Reprinting d.a. levy In The 2000s)," trying to catalog all the variations for any single levy publication is an impossible task. Multiple copies of a chapbook have special covers which were given to friends. In some instances, the covers for a chapbook are individually painted while other covers for the same chapbook have unique collages.

Another habit of levy's was to take overrun pages remaining from other publications & assemble that amalgamation as a separate new publication in an edition of one or five or ten. Even then, not all copies of that publication would contain the same pages. Some of his more unique chapbooks include random overprint pages which had been repeatedly run through the mimeo for various publications so that most of the sheets of paper were blackened with mimeo ink. levy would assemble a handful of these pages in no apparent order, staple covers onto the stack & give this new publication a title (e.g., The Great Tibetan Train Robbery Mystery Play In Color). It appears as if almost every piece of paper was eventually used as a part of something.

What makes this archeological effort to catalog levy's work more difficult is that levy started printing books almost 40 years ago. Many of these books have disappeared or are molding in a box in someone's basement. At best they might be found rusting in the special collections department at a university library or in the vaults of a private collector. Many of the people who were true friends of d.a. levy are a lifetime away. All the fine details as far as exact dates or even who helped print which publication are blurred by decades of dealing with their own lives. Remember, everything was happening so fast at the moment in the 1960s that there wasn't a lot of concern to record volumes of information for posterity. Life was for the NOW, if you could grab it. History was for somebody else to worry about & debate.

So here is a draft version of the d.a. levy bibliography for isis. It is segmented into three sections: the publications that levy produced, books by levy which were produced by a third party and a listing of books which are compilations of previously published works. I can guarantee that there are mistakes & omissions (for now) in these lists. See if you can spot all the errors, then write me & you might win a trip back to Cleveland, Ohio in the 1960s. I can almost see the police knocking on your door right now.

Stay tuned -

Alan Horvath
P.O. Box 2943
Vancouver, WA 98668-2943

Bibliographies organized by:


d.a.levy Books by Other Publishers (Essential)


Return to d.a.levy home page
Return to Light and Dust Anthology of Poetry

Copyright © 2002 by Alan Horvath

Bibliography pages oppened 02/02/2002

This is a cooperative presentation by:
Kirpan Press, Ghost Pony Press, Kaldron On-Line
and Light and Dust Anthology of Poetry

Disrupt IT

D.A. Levy