Anne Waldman, ed., The World Anthology: Poems from the St. Mark’s Poetry Project (1969)
“In the Spring of 1966, I couldn’t wait to graduate from Bennington, and get back ‘home’ (which meant Macdougal Street and subsequently St. Mark’s Place) and the ‘literary life.’ I had edited Silo magazine at school, and Lewis Warsh and I had founded Angel Hair magazine and books at the Berkeley Poetry Conference in the summer of 1965. The fall of 1966 was a critical time for me with Frank O’Hara’s tragic death, but I was also hired as an assistant to the newly christened Poetry Project, a place where ‘only’ poets could get jobs. Troubadour translator and New York poet Paul Blackburn had hosted open readings in the Parish Hall at St. Mark’s the previous year, after moving the scene from the Metro coffeehouse. Joel Oppenheimer, another poet, was named director. He had worked as a printer and wrote columns for the Village Voice in characteristic lowercase. Younger poet Joel Sloman, who’d been a protégé of Denise Levertov, came on as primary assistant. We were being funded by Lyndon Johnson’s Office of Economic Opportunity through a sociologist from the New School who had raised funding specifically to ‘benefit alienated youth on the Lower East Side.’ He would interview the staff, the participants, do a “study.” So, a pilot project. We were ‘all’ guinea pigs. We took the command seriously. When we started The World, there had been a lull in the little magazine blitz, di Prima and LeRoi Jones’s Floating Bear was subsiding, Ed Sanders’s Fuck You/ a magazine of the arts and ‘C’ magazine, edited by Ted Berrigan, weren’t coming out regularly. Carpe diem! A not-so-efficient brainstorm as it turned out, Joel Sloman and I sent out stencils to our desired contributors in mailing tubes that were to be returned with hot-from-the-muse in-progress works. They came back mangled, or improperly typed. … – Anne Waldman”
from a secret location
THE WORLD: New York City Literary Magazine.
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