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Walter Lowenfels
From the jacket of Walter Lowenfels: Reality Prime, Selected Poems

Walter Lowenfels

Interviewed by Bob Forrey*, June 24, 1962

Foney and Lowenfels discuss Lowenfels's poetry writing in Paris and why he quit writing poetry and became a journalist.
  • First Part (55:21): MP3
  • Second Part (44:14): MP3
  • * Forrey was a Yale doctoral student who was the last editor of Masses & Mainstream.

    Reading at Temple University February 25, 1965

    First Part
    1. Found Poem (1:40): MP3
    2. From To An Imaginary Daughter (2:16): MP3
    3. Award (2:37): MP3
    4. Every Poem is a Love Poem (2:52): MP3
    5. To a Hemiplegic (1:42): MP3
    6. My Spectrum Analysis (2:30): MP3
    7. The Weak (2:58): MP3
    8. A Person is Like a Clock; a Child's Poem (0:44): MP3
    9. Vietnam #4 by Clarence Major (0:53): MP3
    10. "I'm Signing in..." (1:06): MP3
    11. From the Power and Industrial Machinery Exhibit (3:10): MP3
    12. Status Symbol by Mari Evans (1:15): MP3
    13. For an Unsuccessful Suicide (cuts off abruptly) (7:42): MP3
    14. Complete Reading (31:58): MP3
    Part Two
    1. Introduction and Discussion of the Politics of Poetry (3:21): MP3
    2. American Voices (6:35): MP3

    Complete Reading (10:20): MP3

    On Walt Whitman and the American Marxist approach to Whitman, 1966

    Discussion with Peter Horn (then of University of Wisconsin), April 11, 1966, recorded in Mays Landing, NJ Complete recording (1:19:08): MP3

    Discussion with Alan DeLoach, March 24, 1969

    With John Wieners and Lillian Lowenfels
    Complete recording (53:01): MP3

    Lecture on Walt Whitman, May 25, 1969 (Location Unknown)

    1. Whitman's many loves and his relevance (3:02): MP3
    2. Whitman in context (2:03): MP3
    3. Life before Leaves of Grass (1:05): MP3
    4. Leaves of Grass "germinates" (1:42): MP3
    5. An introduction to Whitman's love poems and reading 24 from "Song of Myself" (2:52): MP3
    6. "Nothing Furtive About It" : Whitman's love for men (3:01): MP3
    7. Reading 122 from Leaves of Grass "Vigil strange I kept on the field one night..." (3:06): MP3
    8. Whitman's sexuality and love affairs (3:27): MP3
    9. Refusal to edit love poems (1:04): MP3
    10. Reading 20 from Leaves of Grass "A woman waits for me.." (0:57): MP3
    11. Sexual encounters and the mysterious #164 (2:50): MP3
    12. The identity of "Frenchie" (3:31): MP3
    13. Women who loved Whitman (2:09): MP3
    14. Whitman's great secret: living one life in his books, and one outside them (2:22): MP3
    15. Explanation of Whitman's sexuality (2:38): MP3
    16. Whitman's great capacity for Love (5:56): MP3
    17. Whitman's "cosmic liberalism" : Whitman and the worker (4:13): MP3
    18. Whitman as a writer: his relationships with people and with words (5:07): MP3
    19. Whitman's vision (1:56): MP3

    Complete Lecture (52:59): MP3

    Reading at New York University, New York, November 13, 1969

    Complete recording (23:54): MP3

    For more information on Lowenfels' manuscripts and papers, please visit Yale University's Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library

    From Walter Lowenfels Archive CD's

    • Tape 1: First 5 min are Lennox Rayfield. Walter Lowenfels Interviews Lee Hays, Brooklyn, 1962 (1:13:59): MP3
    • Tape 15 Side 1: Lee Hays Birthday Greeting to Walter Lowenfels (7:31): MP3
    • Tape 15 Side 2: Lee Hays Birthday Poem for Walter Lowenfels and Howard Fast leaves the Communist Party (10:07): MP3
    • Tape 15 Side 2: Dr. F Culture Reverse, Lee Hays Brithday Poem for Lowenfels, Criticism of Howard Fast for Leaving the Communist Party (1:16:12): MP3
    • Tape 26 Side 1 Part 1: Walter Lowenfels interviewed by George Wickes, May's Landing, September 6, 1965 (1:18:39): MP3
    • Tape 26 Side 1 Part 2: Walter Lowenfels interviewed by George Wickes, May's Landing, September 6, 1965 (18:23): MP3
    • Tape 26 Side 2: Walter Lowenfels interviewed by George Wickes, May's Landing, September 6, 1965 (38:55): MP3
    • Tape 27 Side 1 Part 1: Walter Lowenfels with Alan DeLoach and Starbuck at Spring Arts Festival, SUNY Buffalo, March 8, 1967 (1:16:49): MP3
    • Tape 27 Side 1 Part 2: Walter Lowenfels with Alan DeLoach and Starbuck at Spring Arts Festival, SUNY Buffalo, March 8, 1967 (24:23): MP3
    • Tape 27 Side 2 Part 2: Walter Lowenfels with Alan DeLoach and Starbuck at Spring Arts Festival, SUNY Buffalo, March 8, 1967 (45:55): MP3
    • Tape 27 Side 2 Part 3: Walter Lowenfels with Alan DeLoach and Starbuck at Spring Arts Festival, SUNY Buffalo, March 8, 1967 (42:31): MP3
    • Tape 44 Side 1: Lowenfel's Eulogy for Michael Frankel with Singing Musical Accompaniment & Classical Music (48:08): MP3
    • Tape 47 Side 1: Walter Lowenfels with Peter Horn on Walt Whitman from an American Marxist Point View Point (11:45): MP3
    • Tape 47 Side 2: Walter Lowenfels with Peter Horn on Walt Whitman from an American Marxist Point View Point (1:06:53): MP3
    • Tape 52: Alan DeLoach's History of Walter Lowenfel's Books and Lowenfels's reading at University of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY (1:06:25): MP3
    • Tape 55 Side 1: Allen Deloach Talks to Lowenfel about his collection of letters and the process of writing (53:01): MP3
    • Tape 58 Side 2: Continued Lillian Lowenfels, Nancy Willard, Eric Lynbloon, Jerry and Jeriana Bozanis. Lowenfel Talks ABout Writing and Getting Published. At Walter Lowenfels' house, 7/20/1968 (22:04): MP3
    • Tape 58 Side 1: "Poets and Writers Reading Their Poems": Lillian Lowenfels, Nancy Willard, Eric LynBloon, Jerry and Jeriana Bozanis. At Walter Lowenfels' House, 7/20/1968 (1:09:41): MP3
    • Tape 60 Side 1: Jazz Poets #1 with Calvin Hernton, Johy Morgan, Peter LaFarge, and Art Berger (23:13): MP3
    • Tape 61: Lowenfels reads found poems. Lawrence Jacobs, Ishmael Reed's Review of Lowenfels Book. At NYU, November 13, 1969 (53:26): MP3
    • The Best of Our Knowledge Interviews Al Filreis, December 31, 2001 (26:31): MP3

    Reading from Sonnets of Love and Liberty and Other Poems(Date and Location Unknown)

    Featured Poems: Albert Einstein, The Audience, To Lillian Lowenfels
    1. Introduction (0:59): MP3
    2. Sonnet Dedicated to Albert Einstein (1:04): MP3
    3. Sonnet Dedicated to the Audience "I confided my hope to more than trees..."(0:55): MP3
    4. Sonnet Dedicated to Walter Lowenfels's wife, Lillian Lowenfels "Say now as we move closer..." (0:55): MP3
    5. Sonnet "Tear out the spring..." (1:05): MP3
    6. Sonnet Dedicated to Lillian Lowenfels "The festive board groans..." (0:55): MP3
    7. Sonnet Dedicated to Lillian Lowenfels "The act of you in my mind is sculptural..." (0:58): MP3
    8. Sonnet Dedicated to the Audience "Extract your hydrogen softly from the sun..." (0:58): MP3
    9. Sonnet Dedicated to Lillian Lowenfels "When eyes cry no no no..." (0:58): MP3
    10. Sonnet Dedicated to Lillian Lowenfels "If on some beachet of times..." (0:40): MP3
    11. Sonnet Dedicated to Lillian Lowenfels "The instant that we touch..." (0:52): MP3
    12. Sea Scape (0:40): MP3
    13. Spring Song (0:32): MP3
    14. Poem for a Six Year Old Girl (1:35): MP3
    15. From the Exposition of Power and Industrial Machinery (1:42): MP3
    16. Excerpts from The Suicide, For Hart Crane (5:02): MP3
    17. Elegie to Appolinaire (6:45): MP3
    18. To Giordano Bruno (2:32): MP3

    Complete Reading (29:37): MP3

    Discussion of Paris in the 20's and 30's (Date and Location Unknown)

    • Complete Discussion (1:02:42): MP3

    Lowenfels Talking and Answering Questions about His Writing with Audience Members (Date and Location Unknown)

    Complete Discussion (18:52): MP3

    Reading Poetry Against War and Other Poems (Date and Location Unknown)

    1. Mr. President (12:23): MP3
    2. Goodbye Jargon: Elegie for the Small Press (2:53): MP3
    3. Lines for Giordano Bruno (4:04): MP3
    4. Comments on Poetry (7:20): MP3
    5. For a Hemiplegic (2:26): MP3

    Complete Reading (29:16): MP3

    Discussion with Lawrence Lipton at Lipton's House in the San Fernando Valley (Date Unknown)

    1. Relationship between culture, writing, and politics (8:48): MP3
    2. Lipton on cultural people vs political people (4:29): MP3
    3. Periodicals in turmoil (5:07): MP3
    4. Poetry reading lesson (7:52): MP3
    5. Poetry as a verbal tradition (1:47): MP3
    6. Relationship to the audience (6:01): MP3
    7. Mass appeal, poetry, and electronic transmission (4:06): MP3
    8. Interpenetrating levels of meaning and intermixing poetry and music (4:17): MP3
    9. Consideration of the tradition of combining poetry and music (2:13): MP3
    10. A new class of audience (4:55): MP3
    11. The changing audience (3:29): MP3

    Complete Interview (53:55): MP3

    Lowenfels talking about his career with Lawrence Lipton and John Howard Lawsen (date and location unknown)

    • Part One (1:02:22): MP3
    • Part Two (32:40): MP3
    • Lowenfels Leading a Poetry Reading of Poetry about Vietnam at Hunter College (Date and Unknown)

      • Complete Reading (59:04): MP3

      Reading Poems into the Record at the Recording Studios at the Library of Congress (Date Unknown)

      1. The Suicide (14:36): MP3
      2. From the Exposition of Power and Industrial Machinery (1:41): MP3
      3. For an Imaginary Daughter (8:40): MP3
      4. Sonnet for Lillian Lowenfels "The festive board groans..." (1:58): MP3
      5. Letter to the President (4:23): MP3

      6. Complete Reading (31:38): MP3

      Reading and talk about poetry, University at Buffalo (Date unknown)

      Introduced by Alan DeLoach

      Complete recording (1:06:25): MP3

      Eulogy for Michael Fraenkel (Date unknown)

      Complete recording (18:33): MP3
      Michael Fraenkel (1896-1957) was born in Lithuania, raised in New York City, and worked in the book trade before going to Paris in 1926 to write. Over the next 12 years he spent most of his time in France, where his circle of friends included Henry Miller, Walter Lowenfels and Anais Nin. Lowenfels and Fraenkel became close in 1929, by which time Fraenkel had drafted Werther's Younger Brother (published 1930), the first formulation of his ideas about death, and Lowenfels had completed USA with Music (1930), a play inspired by the killing of several striking minors in Herrin, Illinois. Together the two writesr formed a publishing venture called "Carrefour." The first Carrefour publication was Anonymous: the Need for Anonymity, a joint manifesto. In 1970 Lowenfels and Howard McCord published The Life of Fraenkel's Death: A Biographical Inquest.

      Walter Lowenfels on PennSound Daily

      These sound recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only.
      © 2008 Judy Jacobs and the estate of Walter Lowenfels. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Distributed by PennSound.