Thursday, February 09, 2006

I was interested that, in his blog today, Ron Silliman mentions Bill Anderson in relationship to an anthology of post avant-garde African-American poetry entitled Every Goodbye Ain't Gone (Univerity of Arkansas). I knew Bill quite well while living in San Francisco back in the late 1960s. Not only was he a very good poet, but, stylistically and politically, he was one of the best journalists I’ve come across. His articles on the first Huey Newton trial, the demonstrations in Mexico City during the ‘68 Olympics, Bobby Kennedy’s assasination, the International Industrialists Conference at the Fairmont and the Living Theater are all classics. Most of them can still be downloaded from the archives of the San Francisco Bay Guardian. Bill was a new journalist before the term was ever invented. But Bill wasn’t so much interested in the relationship of journalism to fiction, as were the likes of Hunter Thompson or Tom Wolfe were, but journalism’s relationship to politically engaged poetry. He deserved more recognition as both a poet and a journalist. It’s good to see that Bill has finally been given some of the recognition that he deserves.

1 comment :

Ron said...

University of Alabama, not Arkansas.