Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1919-2021)

City Lights Books has announced the death of its co-founder, the writer, bookseller, and publisher Lawrence Ferlinghetti, after an astonishingly long and productive career. Ferlinghetti was 101 and had just published a book a year or so ago, making him (along with Herman Wouk) a rare centenarian author of consequence.

I've never been to San Francisco and it's been years since I read any of Ferlinghetti's poetry, but the bookstore and publishing company remain active, having survived a financial crisis a year ago with the help of donations. Long may it continue along its cantankerous way.

I've owned a handful of City Lights books over the years, but the only two I seem to have now are shown here. Both are fairly minor works by writers I admire, but the press did a nice job on them and I'm glad that they exist.


Michael Leddy said...

So the Pocket Poet Series at some point moved away from the little square books. I think every City Lights book I have has that shape.

Chris said...

Yes, those little square editions were great. I like the Cortázar cover photo but I think that art has been replaced in a subsequent expanded edition.