Open Eye, Open Heart
Poetryby Lawrence Ferlinghetti
It is poems such as these, among those of other poets roughly associated with the San Francisco school, which Pablo Neruda had in mind when he spoke with Ferlinghetti in Cuba not so long ago of “your wide-open American poetry.” There is a wide-angle vision and a very great range in the different kinds and genres of poems––personal and lyric, satiric and meditative, public and political, spoken and sung––written over the past decade during the poet’s travels in the world and inside himself––a world seen in a semi-dark glass through which light nevertheless keeps breaking. In the political section, Ferlinghetti’s consistent anarchist-pacifist position, in the tradition of Kenneth Rexroth and Kenneth Patchen, is articulated, showing the poet to be a constant force in the evolution of a radical humanist consciousness.
Clothbound(published Oct, 01 1973)