Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Very Brief History of the Orlovsky Family

[photo: Lafcadio & Peter Orlovsky, outside Peter's small apartment on Potrero Hill, San Francisco, ca. June 1956. Allen Ginsberg Estate/Corbis]

[caption: Peter Orlovsky returned to New York from India, Avenue C and 5th Street, September 1963. Allen Ginsberg] (c. Allen Ginsberg Estate)

[Marie, Lafcadio & Kate Orlovksy, Plainview, NY, December 27, 1989. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]

[Marie Orlovsky, December 27, 1989. c Allen Ginsberg Estate]

[caption: Peter Orlovsky b. 1933 visiting his family - Lafcadio age 47 had lived with us in San Francisco - NY 1955-61 & later intermittent years; mother Kate Orlovsky age 78 totally deaf after botched mastoid operation NY Eye & Ear Hospital circa 1930s; Laff's twin sister Marie who'd lived with me & Peter O. in Lower East Side 1959 while she attended baby nurse school in Jersey -- but quit jobs soon after, angry at hearing voices' filthy gossip behind her back. Center Moriches Long Island, their second floor flat on lonely road, they need taxi to supermarket shopping miles away with S.S.I. checks. July 26, 1987 visit. Allen Ginsberg. (c. Allen Ginsberg Estate)

[Ginsberg caption: "Visit with Julius Orlovsky, hadn't seen him several years, now age 56, front parlor in small town Kirkwood N.Y. residence where with half-dozen Binghamton State Hospital patients subsidized by state funds he was supervised by Mr. & Mrs. Finch in their large family house, April 4, 1987"] (c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]

[photo: Lafcadio & Peter Orlovsky, August 1995. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]

I'd like to be able to say 'run to your nearest bookstore and buy a copy of Peter Orlovsky's Clean Asshole Poems and Smiling Vegetable Songs' but it's been out of print a long time now. Copies online seem to be as high as 60$ at the low end. It's high time it get's republished, but in the meantime, we highly recommend searching out if you haven't yet read it. His poems poems from India are disturbing and vivid, but are balanced in their humanity & tenderness.

To be continued....

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