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A CELEBRATION OF THE LIFE OF
HAROLD NORSE

Cornelia Street Café, NYC
July 20, 2009


Audio of the Celebration is at the foot of the page.


Norse w Fiery Book 1993 © Betty Best


Excerpt from "the statue of liberty is a tourist in the alps"
from In The Hub Of The Fiery Force: Collected Poems 1934-2003
(©Thunder's Mouth Press, 2003).

Kerouac, you're nothing now
only a name - I shake your ghostly hand
we'll meet in oblivion
I'll be in the void soon
but in San Francisco
I type yr unpublished pomes
Allen gave me, his beard gone grey
        my image stared
from TV the other
night & I
stared back
shocked - who's
the strange
 guy??
went home to bed
      thinking
Jack how's the void? we'll meet
there!
  nah, we'll never meet!
we're victims, destroyed
by everything
by time, by politicians,
psychiatrists, doctors, bad air, bad food,
booze, hunger, sex, lovers, no love, money….
    flipflops of planetary woe!
        no time in the abyss
no time to play with form
as we scream in the dark
when void is formless
what's form?

*                        *                        *                        *


Norse in SF 1981 © Ira Cohen

by Steve Koenig


A celebration of Harold Norse, who died June 8, 2009, was co-curated by poet and Beat scholars Valery Oisteanu and Kat Georges. The line up of readers was made up of Norse's friends, colleagues and fans Ira Cohen, Judith Malina, Max Blagg, Jeffrey Cyphers Wright, Steve Dalachinsky, Shelley Miller, Angelo Verga, Tom Walker, George Wallace.

The basement room in Cornelia Street Café, a narrow, cozy space which regularly presents poetry and music, had the feeling of a warm living room in a friend's home, filled with lively, chatty, jocular banter.

Oisteanu has one of those fabulously resonant, basso voices that projects across a room even when sotto voce. The recording begins with his introduction of the guests, and I pushed the record button seconds after he jumped in joshing poet Ira Cohen. If you listen closely, you can hear the excited laughter and cheering of the delightful Judith Malina, co-founder of The Living Theater, good-natured heckling from and back to Acoustic Levitation's mascot poet, Steve Dalachinsky, and from time to time the chime of modern cameras.

*                        *                        *                        *

A CELEBRATION OF THE LIFE OF HAROLD NORSE

Part One: Opening Remarks by Valery Oisteanu. 7:30.

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Part Two: Valery Oisteanu, Angelo Verga, George Wallace, Ira Cohen. 46:11.

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Part Three: Judith Malina, Max Blagg, Jeffrey Cyphers Wright, Steve Dalachinsky, Shelley Miller, Tom Walker. 46: 51.

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Recording ©(p)2009Steven Koenig. All rights revert to the individual performers.

haroldnorse.com
corneliastreetcafe.com
threeroomspress.blogspot.com

 



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