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d.a. levy & the
1960s Literary & Cultural Scene in Cleveland:

(a symposium & celebration)

all events free and open to the public

October 29, 2005

12:30 p.m. -- Panel Talk on the Mimeograph Revolution Era in Cleveland and U.S. by Humanities Scholars: Ingrid Swanberg/ Joel Lipman/ D. R. Wagner/ and Michael Basinski  (at CSU Special Collections room)

2:00-4:30 p.m. with break FILM SHOWINGS:  Showings & discussions are scheduled at the CSU Library Special Collections room

            1) Film: “if I scratch, if I write” by Kon Petrochuk ( 80 mins. 1981; premiere of new 2005 revision with 20 minutes of new footage.)  Talk and Q&A discussion after the showing with filmmaker Kon Petrochuk.

            2) “d.a. levy, Cleveland's Rebel Poet: Interview with Edward Sanders” Premiere showing. Ed Sanders chronicles the Mimeograph Revolution in writing in Cleveland and charts d.a. levy’s place in it. Producers Tom Koba and Larry Smith and Mark Kuhar (35 mins. current); showing followed by a public discussion after the showing.

8:00 p.m. -- Reading:  Reading and Responding to the writing and life of d. a. levy from his intimate poet-friends from 1960’s Cleveland era: Russell Salamon/ Kent Taylor/ Tom Kryss/ D.R. Wagner/ Ingrid Swanberg/ Steve Ferguson/ George Fitzpartick, and others; each is a qualified historian of this time period as well as a well established poet or artist. (90-120 minutes,  Dively Room in CSU's Urban Affairs Building, 1717 Euclid Avenue) with public reception and d.a. levy birthday celebration afterwards).

Sunday, October 30th

1:30 p.m. -- Panel on the Literature and Publishing of d.a. levy, including Issues of Censorship: Ingrid Swanberg/ Joel Lipman/ D. R. Wagner/ Larry Smith, (Humanities Scholars)/ and Mark Kuhar (60 minutes;  Trinity Commons conference room)

3:00 p.m. -- Reunion Reading of Cleveland’s Mimeograph Revolution Poets and Publishers from the 1960’s

Steve Ferguson/ Russell Salamon/ Kent Taylor/ Jim Lang/ Tom Kryss/ Ingrid Swanberg/ D. R. Wagner/ Grace Butcher/ rjs. Poets will address the “Mimeograph Revolution” of that era in Cleveland and read from their writings then and now, then take part in a public discussion afterwards. (90-120 minutes, CSU Special Collections Library room).

October and November 2005

EXHIBITIONS: (These will be ongoing during the month of October and November; free and open to the public in CSU Special Collections Room.)

* Era Books & Magazines and Photography Exhibit of d.a. levy and Cleveland Mimeograph Revolution Era from CSU Memory Archives at Cleveland State University Special Collection (Coordinated by Joanne Cornelius and William Barrow)

The exhibit will acknowledge d.a. levy's historical significance as an innovator in Cleveland's poetry and alternative press scene. levy’s own works of poetry and art along with selected works of his contemporaries, will be on display.

* Contemporary small-press and Zine Exhibit at Mac’s Backs Bookstore, Coventry Rd. Cleveland coordinated by Bree.

Co-Sponsors: Bottom Dog Press, Inc., deepcleveland llc, Cleveland State University Poetry Center and CSU Library Special Collections, Trinity Cathedral (Euclid Ave.), supported by a grant from the Ohio Humanities Council.

For more information contact:

Larry Smith, Lsmithdog@aol.com

Mark Kuhar, markk@deepcleveland.com

Download a flyer HERE


Arrangements have been made with the Wyndham Hotel on Euclid Ave. and E.12th Street (Playhouse Square) for guests to stay at a special $89 rate. You can contact them at 1-800-996-3426, mention the "levy festival," Bottom Dog Press or CSU.

Biographical Sketches for levyfest  Participants:

Michael Basinski, is the Curator of The Poetry Collection, State University of New York  at Buffalo. He performs his work as a solo poet and in ensemble with BuffFluxus.  Among his more than 35 books of poetry are Heka (Factory School); Strange Things Begin to Happen When a Meteor Crashes in the Arizona Desert (Burning Press); The Idyllic Book (Michel Letko, Houston, Texas); Cnyttan and Heebie-Jeebies (Meow Press); By and The Doors (House Press). “Sing to me oh smear burning pale blue frog of print.”

Joanne Cornelius (Parma, Ohio) is Coordinator of the Digital Production Unit and curator of the d.a. levy collection at CSU Library. Joanne established the levy collection in 2003 and with the support of the CSU Library and Special Collections Head William Barrow, continues to pursue original works of levy for preservation and digitization purposes. The Library’s d.a. levy Collection is available on-line at www. ClevelandMemory.org/levy  “levy’s 1960s Cleveland is tumultuous and beautiful; nothing has changed.” 

George Fitzpatrick (Cleveland, Ohio) noted artist was a friend of d.a. levy and the writers of the Mimeograph Revolution; operated Continental Cinema in East Cleveland.

rjs (Burton, Ohio)poet, publisher, and intimate friend of d.a.levy, helped run The Gate coffeehouse, and its open readings, participant in Cleveland’s Mimeograph Revolution, edited levy anthology and published levy chapbooks, was sentenced to 6 months in workhouse for “being an associate of a known poet.”

Tom Koba (Berlin Heights, OH) directs T.R. Koba Associates, video and film productions. A graduate of Ohio University Art Department, he has made many historical documentary films on the civil war and on Ohio writers: James Wright’s Ohio and Kenneth Patchen: An Art of Engagement.

Tom Kryss, (Ravenna, OH), an intimate friend with d.a.levy and fellow writer and publisher of black rabbit books including books by levy. Forthcoming, Search for the Reason Why: New and Selected Poems is forthcoming from Bottom Dog Press, 2006.   d.a.levy: (“PROSE: on poetry in the wholesale education & culture system”):

“…& I’m afraid that someday people will all read poetry & not try to live it, sort of like christianity or buddhism or any religion…the power struggle is so we can live & love, & the mysticism is the changes we go thru trying to do it & survive..”

Mark Kuhar,(Berea, Ohio) contemporary publisher, via the internet and hard copy, poet, editor, literary critic; he is a financial manager and editor-in-chief of Advanstar Communications’ Pit & Quarry magazine, Ohio Writer magazine; proprietor of deep cleveland llc, a publishing, entertainment and education group, and editor of local literary e-zine deep cleveland junkmail oracle, www.deep cleveland.com. In Oct. 2002 he organized a national d.a.levy Celebration in Cleveland’s Flats. d.a. levy was…Equal parts poet, publisher, artist, cultural figure, boo-hoo of the Cleveland, Ohio industrial wastelands, local conscience of the 1960s, psychedelic prophet, beat street huckster & one-man carnival sideshow, entrepreneur, patron of the down-and-out artist, performer, gypsy angel, wandering mystic bodhisattva of the East Side, genius, lover, first-amendment martyr, pure dharma consciousness (maybe too pure for this world).”

Andy Kurtz (Huron, OH) is chair of humanities at Firelands College of Bowling Green State University. A native Ohioan, his work in American Studies often focuses on alternative culture.

jim lang (Lakewood, OH) = phopoepotographer = 10 years as a potter = 50 years as a photographer = 60 years as a poet = 120 years of self-expression = recent work on green panda anthy, brick magazine, agent of chaos web site, tri-c pottery sale. Parallel printers progress, from lead to zinc to offset, but levy died for it.

Joel Lipman (Toledo, OH) is professor of Art and English at the University of Toledo and his poetry, both visual or linear, is indebted to Ohio's lineage of artist-poets. Joel was a University of Wisconsin student in 1967 when d.a. levy was Writer in Residence at the Free University of Wisconsin. His books include Machette Chemestry/Panades Physics and Provocateur, and he still has an operative portable mimeo. “Because I used to drop quarters there, my favorite d.a. poem is ‘i found it at the movies (or) HUMMED-OFF IN A LAUNDRO-MAT.’”

Kon Petrochuk (Columbus, OH), Professor of Media Studies at The Columbus College of Art & Design, is a film and videomaker, works include levy film “if I scratch, if I write”/1984 & re-cut 2005.   Works have been screened at many venues including MOMA/NY and Sundance FF.  “I feel very close to levy and Cleveland mostly due to all of the time and energies that went into the film, and because I grew up in Cleveland and attended the same high school that levy did.   I certainly understand the love-hate feeling toward this city that most of it’s artists have, especially those who are long gone.”

Russell Salamon (Los Angeles, CA) poet and author of Descent into Cleveland, a tribute to the cultural excitement that was d.a. levy. “In 1964 and 1965, while still operating a letterpress, d.a. levy stayed rent-free in Russell's apartment overlooking the Flats. We were going to make Cleveland famous. He worked deep into the night in Adelaide Simon's basement in Shaker Heights making various books, then would walk (eight) miles to the West Side, part of it through a rough section. He said he was safe because he was a poet. ‘Those people love poets.’”

Edward (Ed) Sanders (Woodstock, NY) was a chief participant of the later Beat and Mimeograph revolution. As a friend and member of The Fugs alternative rock group, he came to Cleveland in 1967 to raise funds for levy’s legal defense. His recent works on the era can be read in 1968: A History in Verse (Black Sparrow Press) and the collected Tales of Beatnik Glory (Thunder Mouth Press). “They [Cleveland] ought to do a nice poured bronze statue of the slender and handsome young d.a.levy with a letterpress next to him.And put it right next to the Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame--an old levy shrine. I mean the town owes him. The city owes him one.”

Ingrid Swanberg, (Madison, WI) is the editor of Abraxas Magazine and the director of Ghost Pony Press, and she is a curator, with Karl Young and Karl Kempton, of the d.a.levy homepage.  She is a poet, connected with d.a.levy, and a publisher of the Mimeograph Revolution.  She edited the collection Zen Concrete & Etc., by d.a.levy (Ghost Pony Press, 1991) and has just completed her dissertation on modern lyric poetry (Comparative Literature, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison) in which levy is a central figure.  “levy saw ahead of his time, knew the value of his gift, and did not compromise it.  He actively refused the marginalization of the lyric poet in the modern time. He is original, solitary, completely authentic.”

Larry Smith (Huron, OH) is the director of Bottom Dog Press and author of biographies on Kenneth Patchen and Lawrence Ferlinghetti. He also wrote and co-produced video programs with Tom Koba on poets James Wright and Kenneth Patchen. His Milldust and Roses: Memoirs was published by Ridgeway Press, Detroit. “I have always been drawn to writing that is engaged and visionary; d.a.levy was a master of both.”

Kent Taylor (San Francisco, CA) poet and intimate friend of d.a.levy, married levy’s cousin Joannie Czaban, moved to San Francisco in 1970. His first six books were published by levy. “I started writing poetry my freshman year at Ohio Wesleyan University. After quitting medical school at Ohio State University, I returned to my hometown, Cleveland, and became a charter member of the underground poetry scene that erupted there during the 60's.” Publications include 14 books and
hundreds of appearances in such anthologies and periodicals as The Quarterly, Rattapallax, Abraxas, Ragged Lion, Onthebus, Invisible City, Vagabond Anthology, Painted Bride Quarterly, Free Lance, and Rain City Review.

D.R. Wagner (Sacramento, CA) University of California at Davis, lecturer in design, musician, visual artist, poet with over twenty-one books of poetry and a number of musical compositions, and a publisher of the Mimeograph Revolution (press:today:Niagara and Runcible Spoon), intimate friend and co-author with d.a.levy of  The Egyptian Stroboscope. He founded, and directed for six years, the Open Ring Galleries for the arts, and was  artist-in-residence for the California Arts Council at the David Lubin School in Sacramento. He also ran the Art In Public Places program for the State of California and served the California Arts Council  in their Information and services division.




suburban monastery death poem

Order this special 2005 reprint of d.a. levy's epic "suburban monastery death poem" (42 pages, side-stapled, bottom dog press/deep cleveland press). Profits from the sale of this book will go to offset the cost of the symposium. $8, plus $2 shipping/handling. Call me at 440-891-2607 to place yr order, or mail a check to p.o. box 435, berea, oh 44017, or use paypal:


levy exhibit

As part of Cleveland's levyfest: d.a. levy & the 1960's Literary &
Cultural Scene in Cleveland celebration, Cleveland State University
Library's Special Collections Department proudly presents an exhibit of
d.a. levy materials from the Library's d.a. levy Collection. The
display acknowledges levy's historical significance as an innovator in
Cleveland's poetry & alternative press scene. Over 150 pieces of levy's
own original works of poetry, art and publishing, along with selected
works of his contemporaries and even more surprises, will be on display
in Special Collections, located in the Libray, Room 320, from now
through the end of November. For more information on d.a. levy and to
view the Library's growing digital collection of levy's work, visit:

For more information on Cleveland State University's Special
Collections Department, including exhibit hours of operation and
directions, visit:



For more information about d.a. levy, go to these links:

d.a. levy memory project

a d.a levy chronology

Tracing the Places of  d.a. levy (1942-1968)

d.a. levy archive at kent state university



deep cleveland home page ???


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