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Dead Lions Paperback – March 6, 2014
"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Pre-order today
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Of the four lions, I found Bessie's story the most inspiring. A.D. writes about Bessie's courage during the McCarthy era when he became one of the Hollywood Ten. He was blacklisted, his writing career destroyed by crooked, plebeian politicians. A courageous man of his convictions, Bessie fought in the Spanish Civil War and always stood up for his beliefs. A.D. quotes Bessie as saying that the biggest threat to liberty was the Far Right. A.D. touches us all when he describes Bessie's funeral and an aging Harry Bridges signing the guest book in a Marin County chapel.
Winans depicts Beat poet Bob Kaufman, known for frequenting the coffee houses and bars of North Beach, as a comic-tragic figure who deserved so much more recognition than he received. As did Jack Micheline, street poet of the people. A.D. writes how Micheline boasted that he never taught a creative writing class, held a residency, received a grant, or curried the favors of the "poetry business boys." The same could be said of Winans himself.
Bukowski's poetry is well known and speaks for itself. Winans details their friendship in his memoir The Holy Grail: Charles Bukowski and the Second Coming Revolution.
A.D.'s crisp memories of these four important writers bear witness to their unique place in San Francisco's literary history and beyond.Share his precious gift with your writer friends. Dead Lions will remind them that the British poet Robert Graves was right when he said that while there's no money in poetry, there's no poetry in money, either.