Stars Seen In Person: Selected Journals Of John Wieners by John WienersStars Seen In Person: Selected Journals Of John Wieners by John Wieners

Stars Seen In Person: Selected Journals Of John Wieners

byJohn WienersEditorMichael Seth StewartPreface byAmmiel Alcalay

Paperback | September 25, 2015

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A contributor to Donald Allen''s seminal New American Poetry anthology, John Wieners was on the periphery of many of the twentieth century''s most important avant-garde poetry scenes, from Black Mountain and the Boston Renaissance to the New York School and the SF Renaissance. Having achieved cult status among poets, Wieners has also become known for the compelling nature of his journals, a mixture of early drafts of poems, prose fragments, lists, and other fascinating minutiae of the poet''s imagination. Stars Seen in Person: Selected Journals of John Wieners collects four of his previously unpublished journals from the period between 1955 and 1969. The first journal depicts a young, openly gay, self-described would-be poet" dashing around bohemian Boston with writer and artist friends, pre-drugs and pre-fame. By the last book, decimated by repeated institutionalization (the first for drug-related psychosis, the rest the consequence of the first) and personal tragedies, Wieners is broken down and in great pain, but still writing honestly and with detail about the life he''s left with. These journals capture a post-war bohemian world that no longer exists, depicted through the prism of Wieners'' sense of glamour. Praise for Stars Seen in Person : "Like Rimbaud in Season in Hell , or Baudelaire with Intimate Journals , there''s an unguarded spark and trust in John Wieners because impulse and imagination reign supreme. In 1955 he writes, "I shall try the only true thing I want to do. I shall go to my poems." Predating The Hotel Wentley Poems , moving through Ace of Pentacles , and ushering us into his life before Nerves , Stars Seen in Person further illuminates John as our future/former best unkept secret."- Micah Ballard "Thanks to Michael Seth Stewart''s editorial legerdemain, at long last we have the magnificent John Wieners here before us, in his full undressed splendor: poet, stargazer, philosopher, shaman, flaneur, survivor. His journals - an inspiring monument, filled with taut provocations and purple illuminations - are valuable as cultural history, as lyric performance, as uninhibited autobiography, and as a motley, genre-defying epitome of gesamtkunstwerk aesthetic possibilities that seem as fresh and enticing as anything being dreamt up today."- Wayne Koestenbaum "These pages of notebooks and poetry-so exhaustively exhumed and returned to light and breath-are equivalent to Rilke''s Letters to a Young Poet , but in reverse. John Wieners (forever young) evolved through his prose notes towards a sustained poetics of adolescence, holding that tormented phase on a long unyielding band-wave, resisting the sop of adult living with all his might and undergoing the inevitable punishments that such persistence brings."- Fanny Howe "John Wieners remains one of the best poets of my generation. His work & life continue to influence younger poets. These journals reveal his deep commitment to poetry & the poem; they contextualize his constant questing & devotion to the art. I knew John during many of the periods his journals cover &, as always, remain amazed & moved by his deeply examined honesty & purity."- David Meltzer John Wieners studied with Charles Olson at Black Mountain College, and later edited the small magazine Measure . He lived for a year and a half in San Francisco, where he wrote his breakthrough book, Hotel Wentley Poems (1958). In the early seventies he settled into an apartment on Boston''s Beacon Hill, where he lived and wrote until his death in 2002. A contributor to Donald Allen''s seminal New American Poetry anthology, John Wieners was on the periphery of many of the twentieth century''s most important avant-garde poetry scenes, from Black Mountain and the Boston Renaissance to the New York School and the SF Renaissance. Having achieved cult status among poets, Wieners has also become known for the compelling nature of his journals, a mixture of early drafts of poems, prose fragments, lists, and other fascinating minutiae of the poet''s imagination. Stars Seen in Person: Selected Journals of John Wieners collects four of his previously unpublished journals from the period between 1955 and 1969. The first journal depicts a young, openly gay, self-described "would-be poet" dashing around bohemian Boston with writer and artist friends, pre-drugs and pre-fame. By the last book, decimated by repeated institutionalization (the first for drug-related psychosis, the rest the consequence of the first) and personal tragedies, Wieners is broken down and in great pain, but still writing honestly and with detail about the life he''s left with. These journals capture a post-war bohemian world that no longer exists, depicted through the prism of Wieners'' sense of glamour. Praise for Stars Seen in Person : "Like Rimbaud in Season in Hell , or Baudelaire with Intimate Journals , there''s an unguarded spark and trust in John Wieners because impulse and imagination reign supreme. In 1955 he writes, "I shall try the only true thing I want to do. I shall go to my poems." Predating The Hotel Wentley Poems , moving through Ace of Pentacles , and ushering us into his life before Nerves , Stars Seen in Person further illuminates John as our future/former best unkept secret."- Micah Ballard "Thanks to Michael Seth Stewart''s editorial legerdemain, at long last we have the magnificent John Wieners here before us, in his full undressed splendor: poet, stargazer, philosopher, shaman, flaneur, survivor. His journals - an inspiring monument, filled with taut provocations and purple illuminations - are valuable as cultural history, as lyric performance, as uninhibited autobiography, and as a motley, genre-defying epitome of gesamtkunstwerk aesthetic possibilities that seem as fresh and enticing as anything being dreamt up today."- Wayne Koestenbaum "These pages of notebooks and poetry-so exhaustively exhumed and returned to light and breath-are equivalent to Rilke''s Letters to a Young Poet , but in reverse. John Wieners (forever young) evolved through his prose notes towards a sustained poetics of adolescence, holding that tormented phase on a long unyielding band-wave, resisting the sop of adult living with all his might and undergoing the inevitable punishments that such persistence brings."- Fanny Howe "John Wieners remains one of the best poets of my generation. His work & life continue to influence younger poets. These journals reveal his deep commitment to poetry & the poem; they contextualize his constant questing & devotion to the art. I knew John during many of the periods his journals cover &, as always, remain amazed & moved by his deeply examined honesty & purity."- David Meltzer John Wieners studied with Charles Olson at Black Mountain College, and later edited the small magazine Measure . He lived for a year and a half in San Francisco, where he wrote his breakthrough book, Hotel Wentley Poems (1958). In the early seventies he settled into an apartment on Boston''s Beacon Hill, where he lived and wrote until his death in 2002. "
John Wieners was born in 1934 in Milton, Massachusetts. Dissatisfied with his Boston College education and electrified by the work of poet/scholar Charles Olson, he went to study under Olson at Black Mountain College for two nonconsecutive terms in the school's final days. Transformed by the experience, he returned to Boston and began ...
Supplication: Selected Poems Of John Wieners
Supplication: Selected Poems Of John Wieners

by John Wieners

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Title:Stars Seen In Person: Selected Journals Of John WienersFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 8 × 5.5 × 0.71 inPublished:September 25, 2015Publisher:City Lights PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0872866688

ISBN - 13:9780872866683

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Read alongside the four journals spanning 1955-1969 assembled in Stars Seen in Person, the lilting, drifting highs, lows, and noise of his poems come to feel more like carefully distilled concentrates of his grander, wilder project of seeing, saying, and seizing as many moments as he could. In his early 'Untitled Journal of a Would-Be Poet,' Wieners turns a crucial corner in embracing the faith in breath Charles Olson put into his 'projective verse,' and the young poet coming 'back to poetry again' out of 'an admiration of men, an enthusiasm for men, whose whole lives have been devoted to its perfection. Not to poetry really, but to the poem.' A second journal, 'Blaauwildebeestefontein,' is rich with poems figuring themselves out, brief flashes of budding poetics ('The Known is never complete / enough. It is the unKnown which completes me.'). The third and fourth come from his time in Buffalo, where he went to resume studies with Olson in the late 1960s. Dark and difficult, these entries trace the bloom and failure of his relationship with a woman; they also serveas undercurrent for some of his strongest poems.'- The Boston Globe"Wieners was that rare poet who risked everything for the sake of his art. Just how high he placed the stakes is now made clear by the appearance of his earliest prose work ... in a new omnibus edition of four previously unpublished journals gathered under the title Stars Seen in Person ... From the first pages the reader can't help but be struck by the force of his enthusiasm for things literary and his elevated sense of poetic destiny"- Bookforum"The newly published journals match and exceed all preexisting Wieners publications ... Journals editor Michael Seth Stewart's introduction and an intimate preface by Ammiel Alcalay do a splendid job situating Wieners as part of 'the occult school of Boston poetry.'"- BOMB" Stars Seen in Person is an abundantly rewarding book, a treasure-house of occult desperation and wonder; a rage against life that somehow hungers for more life ... There are also great flowing unparagraphed blasts of emotion, infused with Wieners's quintessential, paradoxical yearning for physicality and disappearance, carnality and self-erasure. For him the question was not 'to be or not to be,' but rather, why does it have to be an 'or' and not an 'and.''- Electric Literature"Beware: the electric energy of this avant-garde poet's early work could give you static shock. He articulates so well the heady struggle between writing aspirations and his perceived failures. But he's not immune to heartbreak, addiction, or leaving work unfinished (memorably, one story about a man who is addicted to taking swan boats in the park). There's a gritty glamour to Wieners's journals, which Fanny Howe called 'Letters to a Young Poet in reverse.''- Kenyon Review"The precision of observed detail, the unforced generalization, the cosmopolitanism, and the ability to see a few inches of bare skin as metaphor, symbol, or definition-these are Wieners' trademark skills. Reading Stars Seen in Person: Selected Journals, with over 200 pages of prose and poetry, confirmed that assessment ... Stars Seen in Person is a good start toward reviving Wieners.'- The Gay & Lesbian Review"This is a harrowing book. A young twenty-year-old John Wieners lays bare his innermost thoughts in a selected journals that sees him living in the snowy wastes of a Boston winter ... The four journals included here are previously unpublished, in thinking about American post war poetry this makes this a doubly important publication, adding, as it does, to our wider knowledge of a poet who while respected and admired by his poet peers, sometimes dipped under the radar in the bigger scheme of things ... With this book and the publication of Supplication, a selected poems volume, it has to be hoped that his star will rise again."- Beat Scene'[John Wieners] affiliations may define the narrative we use to shape his biography, but the endearing immediacy of the journals and the brisk freedoms of the poetry constantly reintroduce us to him as a sort of artistic free agent. His sacraments and confessions are not meant to lead him or the reader toward a higher state-they simply are the highest possible rung on a salvaging ladder of expression.'-Ron Slate "Read alongside the four journals spanning 1955-1969 assembled in Stars Seen in Person, the lilting, drifting highs, lows, and noise of his poems come to feel more like carefully distilled concentrates of his grander, wilder project of seeing, saying, and seizing as many moments as he could. In his early 'Untitled Journal of a Would-Be Poet,' Wieners turns a crucial corner in embracing the faith in breath Charles Olson put into his 'projective verse,' and the young poet coming 'back to poetry again' out of 'an admiration of men, an enthusiasm for men, whose whole lives havebeen devoted to its perfection. Not to poetry really, but to the poem.' A second journal, 'Blaauwildebeestefontein,' is rich with poems figuring themselves out, brief flashes of budding poetics ('The Known is never complete / enough. It is the unKnown which completes me.'). The third and fourth come from his time in Buffalo, where he went to resume studies with Olson in the late 1960s. Dark and difficult, these entries trace the bloom and failure of his relationship with a woman; they alsoserve as undercurrent for some of his strongest poems." - The Boston Globe"Wieners was that rare poet who risked everything for the sake of his art. Just how high he placed the stakes is now made clear by the appearance of his earliest prose work ... in a new omnibus edition of four previously unpublished journals gathered under the title Stars Seen in Person ... From the first pages the reader can't help but be struck by the force of his enthusiasm for things literary and his elevated sense of poetic destiny" - Bookforum"The newly published journals match and exceed all preexisting Wieners publications ... Journals editor Michael Seth Stewart's introduction and an intimate preface by Ammiel Alcalay do a splendid job situating Wieners as part of 'the occult school of Boston poetry.'" - BOMB" Stars Seen in Person is an abundantly rewarding book, a treasure-house of occult desperation and wonder; a rage against life that somehow hungers for more life ... There are also great flowing unparagraphed blasts of emotion, infused with Wieners's quintessential, paradoxical yearning for physicality and disappearance, carnality and self-erasure. For him the question was not 'to be or not to be,' but rather, why does it have to be an 'or' and not an 'and.'" - Electric Literature"Beware: the electric energy of this avant-garde poet's early work could give you static shock. He articulates so well the heady struggle between writing aspirations and his perceived failures. But he's not immune to heartbreak, addiction, or leaving work unfinished (memorably, one story about a man who is addicted to taking swan boats in the park). There's a gritty glamour to Wieners's journals, which Fanny Howe called 'Letters to a Young Poet in reverse.'" - Kenyon Review"The precision of observed detail, the unforced generalization, the cosmopolitanism, and the ability to see a few inches of bare skin as metaphor, symbol, or definition - these are Wieners' trademark skills. Reading Stars Seen in Person: Selected Journals, with over 200 pages of prose and poetry, confirmed that assessment ... Stars Seen in Person is a good start toward reviving Wieners." - The Gay & Lesbian Review"This is a harrowing book. A young twenty-year-old John Wieners lays bare his innermost thoughts in a selected journals that sees him living in the snowy wastes of a Boston winter ... The four journals included here are previously unpublished, in thinking about American post war poetry this makes this a doubly important publication, adding, as it does, to our wider knowledge of a poet who while respected and admired by his poet peers, sometimes dipped under the radar in the bigger scheme of things ... With this book and the publication of Supplication, a selected poems volume, it has to be hoped that his star will rise again." - Beat Scene"[John Wieners] affiliations may define the narrative we use to shape his biography, but the endearing immediacy of the journals and the brisk freedoms of the poetry constantly reintroduce us to him as a sort of artistic free agent. His sacraments and confessions are not meant to lead him or the reader toward a higher state-they simply are the highest possible rung on a salvaging ladder of expression."-Ron Slate"