People like the political critic Noam Chomsky cannot get on commercial television and he bemoans the centralisation of electronic and print media into fewer and fewer hands.
Ferlinghetti's poetry communicates through plain-spoken language, like the man himself.
When he asks if New Zealand is "not like rural England any more?
Kiernan wrote, "the most sweet-tempered of his books.
The political and societal passions that tend to dominate his other volumes strike a harsher, less engaging note."Colley provides the "In woods where many rivers run" section with an appropriately pastoral piano setting, and the innocent, pre-psychedelic vision of "the penny candy store beyond the El" sits above a wailing, slow-bop jazz saxophone.
He recalls performances with poet Kenneth Rexroth in the 50s in a jazz club in San Francisco's North Beach which were recorded for the Fantasy jazz label."There were a few tracks where we really hit it, but generally it was a disaster, murder on the poetry.
Musicians were like, 'Man, go ahead and read your poems but we got to blow.' So the poet ends up trying to be heard above the din, like he's hawking fish on the street corner."He believes the audience for poetry today is bigger than ever, but he is dismissive of the "ranting tradition" and the more recent genre of spoken-word performances which are often undiluted, ill-formed diatribes."And if you open up any modern poetry anthology, about four-fifths at least is really prose in the typography of poetry."What he hears mostly is alienation among young poets: "The Beats were non-violent anarchists, today there is quite a violent feature to it and rap poetry is a good symptom of it." The average rap poem, he says, is a pure stream of alienation.
After the war he earned his doctorate in poetry at the Sorbonne in Paris, then in 1951 moved to San Francisco.
With Peter Martin he published City Lights magazine (named after the Chaplin movie and its image of the perennial outsider) out of second-floor rooms on the corner of Broadway and Columbus Avenues.
We're open seven days a week until midnight and there are always people here."Yes, City Lights has been hit a little by the booksellers ("under 5 per cent.
Ours is a special case") but what they stock is books.