d. a. levy

Cleveland’s Counterculturalist

The Lakewood Public Library  |  Sundays with the Friends  |  Sunday, April 15, 2018 – 2:00 p.m.

As poet, artist and publisher, d.a. levy was an important literary and underground figure in Cleveland’s emerging poetry and small/alternative press scene in the early 1960s and continued to be until his untimely death in 1968. levy documented his love-hate relationship with the city and the politics of the day through his poetry and art which today provides a unique political and social perspective of 1960s Cleveland. Considered a visionary by many of his contemporaries, levy transcended the geographical boundaries of the city as well, with his work acknowledged by such nationally renowned poets as Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder. Although levy created large amounts of textual and concrete poetry and art in his young life, few of his original materials are in circulation today. Sadly before his death, he destroyed much of his remaining pieces and gave the rest away to friends. Fellow poets and friends of levy’s, opined that levy “carries Cleveland around in his shirt pocket like some small clawed animal. And he loves it.” Too often, though, that love was not returned. In levy’s own words:

. . . i spend my days in 
 amazement - wondering at your
 callousness & your wide-open
 hypocrisy -

cleveland, i gave you
 the poems that no one ever 
 wrote about you
 and you gave me 
 NOTHING