Image of the poet Michael Brownstein.

Michael Brownstein is a poet, a novelist, and an activist. Often associated with Beat writing and both the New York School and a second generation of New York School poets, Brownstein moved to New York City in 1965 and quickly became part of the Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church. In his poetry and prose, Brownstein draws on shamanic and indigenous healing practices from South America as well as non-Western wisdom and mystic traditions, including Hinduism and Buddhism. He has published numerous collections of poetry, including Behind the Wheel (1967); Highway to the Sky (1969), which won a Frank O’Hara Poetry Award; 3 American Tantrums (1970); Strange Days Ahead (1975); and Oracle Night: A Love Poem (1982). His novels include Country Cousins (1974), The Touch (1987), and Self-Reliance (1994). His experiences in the anti-globalization movement led him to write the “treatise/poem” World on Fire (2002). Brownstein has taught at the University of Colorado, Columbia University, and the Naropa Institute.