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Poets in New York, 4 of 6

By Forrest Gander

No Eyes: Lester Young by David Meltzer, Black Sparrow Books
David Meltzer’s No Eyes: Lester Young
 is one of the most masterful, joyous, life-affirming books of poems on music (and IN music) published in the United States.

It is only one of some fifty-odd titles that Meltzer has published in his 72 years. A serious musician (on the guitar), an anthologist, a magazine editor, a legendary performer, a poet and essayist, Meltzer can say, like Chaucer’s Wife of Bath, “That I have had my world as in my tyme.” His troubadour spirit and his precise, swooping, intervallic lyricism energize American poetry and keep it tuned to the body. No Eyes: Lester Young
 came out in 2000 from Black Sparrow. Meltzer’s most recent title is David’s Copy
, a selected poems (Penguin, 2005).

Comment (1)

  • On October 13, 2008 at 8:18 am Dale Smith wrote:

    Forrest, these are both great books–thanks for mentioning them here. David’s book “Beat Thing” is also terrific–one of the great meditations on the bop-and-bomb era of Cold War U. S. culture from the heat-mind of one of its greatest writers….

Posted in Uncategorized on Monday, October 13th, 2008 by Forrest Gander.