Doing a quick check of the net, it looks as if Lawrence Ferlinghetti turns 100 years old today.
The event could have slipped past my radar, except a few days ago I got a deluxe one-sheet poem from D. S. Black titled “For Lawrence Upon a Century” all about “a library of insurgency” and I thought, hey, is the century mark coming up? I checked, and so it was.
Last year about this time my pal the poet Donald Sidney-Fryer asked me for some reason if Ferlinghetti and Nancy Peters, both of City Lights, were alive. That day, who could say? So I hopped on the net and to the best of its tentacled ability the answer seemed to be yes.
I told DSF, based on the info uncovered, that Ferlinghetti would be 99 in a couple of days. 99 seemed like a lot, but 100 is more.
DSF just wrote again — a real, old-time, stamped letter — to report that he’d just had a full physical — including an “electrocardiac exam wid all dem wires and t’ings” — and at the age of 84 is “astonishingly HEALTHY”. . . .
Could it be that I have met at least two poets who have cracked or might crack one hundred big ones?