WSJ Plugs BHA’s Pier 1 Whitman Blast

Reminder: the Brooklyn Heights Association’s celebtation of Walt Whitman, produced in collaboration with Issue Project Room, will be this Thursday evening, from 5:00 to midnight, on the harbor lawn of Pier 1, Brooklyn Bridge Park. According to today’s Wall Street Journal:

So while a mobile, marathon reading of “Leaves of Grass” begins at 5 p.m. and occurs all over the park, Animal Collective sidekicks Prince Rama will mix Sanskrit chants and synthesizers, and Shannon Fields, from the band Stars Like Fleas, will lead a seven-piece ensemble in songs inspired by 19th-century shaped-note singing—that most democratic of American musical forms. Other performers, from avant-garde jazz bassist Henry Grimes to funk and folk acts, will lend music to Whitman’s words.

Also participating are the Wingdale Community Singers, a group that includes novelist Rick Moody, author of, among others, Garden State, The Ice Storm, Purple America, and The Diviners.

For more information, see the BHA website.

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  • Daniela G.

    The Brooklyn Heights Association should have asked us Brooklyn Heights resident poets to participate so that we’d bring our friends to celebrate our iconic poet, Walt Whitman. Why ignore your local poets who know and love Whitman so well? Is a profit without honor in his own country? I, for one, have written and published 6 volumes of poetry while living in Brooklyn Heights, and I hosted and initiated two reading series named after Whitman, and created the FIRST Brooklyn Bridge Poetry Walk in 1971 with a grant from The New York State Council for the Arts. I have a Lifetime Achievement Award in Poetry, 2007. I hosted the WALT WHITMAN POETRY SERIES the Brooklyn Historical Society in the 1970’s and had Brooklyn’s finest poets at the time, reading in it. I won a grant from Poets & Writers, Inc. to run that series and awaken Brooklyn Heights to Brooklyn Poets. We always began the events with a poem from Whitman. I also ran a series titled CELEBRATING LITERARY BROOKLYN and I edit from my Brooklyn Heights office. A quote from Walt Whitman is its epigraph. Hmmmm. I guess a poet is without honor in her own country. I won’t even mention how many thousands of Brooklyn Children were taught poetry and introduced to Walt Whitman’s poems by me through the fifteen years I worked as a Poet-in-Residence in Brooklyn’s public schools with the Poets-in-the-Schools, Inc. program. At nearly 70 years, and after living in Brooklyn Heights for over 43 years, serving the community as a resident poet, perhaps, I have a right to toot my horn here! But, there are many fine Brooklyn poets, D. Nurkse, Bob Hershon, Harvey Shapiro, Sapphire, etc. who read in my series and who should have been invited to read in the Walt Whitman Marathon.
    Ah well, Daniela Gioseffi,
    American Book Award winning author of Brooklyn Heights.