Memoirs of a Bastard Angel: A Fifty-Year Literary and Erotic Odyssey

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9781560253853: Memoirs of a Bastard Angel: A Fifty-Year Literary and Erotic Odyssey
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Harold Norse has spent half a century simultaneously at the center and in the vanguard of literary and homosexual subcultures. His career began in 1939, when W. H. Auden seduced and “married” Norse’s college lover, Chester Kallman. In Greenwich Village Norse became an intimate of James Baldwin (then working on his first novel) and in Provincetown lived with Tennessee Williams, who was completing The Glass Menagerie. In 1952, William Carlos Williams presented Norse at his reading debut calling Norse “the best poet of your generation.” Other admirers included Anais Nin, Dylan Thomas, Christopher Isherwood, and e.e. Cummings. In the 1960s in Paris, Norse codeveloped the innovative Cut-up method while living in the Beat Hotel with William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, and Gregory Corso. In North Africa, Greece, and Spain Norse befriended Robert Graves, Leonard Cohen, and Paul and Jane Bowles. Repatriating to Venice, California, in 1968, Norse formed a literary alliance with Charles Bukowski (who called him “one of the great ones”) and lifted weights with Arnold Schwarzenegger. Under any circumstances this book would be a major social document, but because he is a superb, evocative stylist, Harold Norse’s candid autobiography is an engrossing classic of its kind. “Harold Norse’s beautiful Memoirs (are) going to be right by my bedside with Flaubert and Marquez. It’s an exalted work!”—Andrei Codrescu, “All Things Considered,” National Public Radio “Magically evocative and visual, Memoirs of a Bastard Angel literally reads itself. ”—William Burroughs “Harold Norse has lived a life beyond my powers of imagination.”—Armistead Maupin

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From Publishers Weekly:

Norse ( Beat Hotels ) immerses the reader in bohemian and gay subcultures in this freewheeling, name-dropping autobiography. In the early, slightly acrimonious chapters, W. H. Auden steals his lover, Chester Kallman, who became Auden's lifelong companion. Norse dispenses an abundance of stories: he read James Baldwin's first novel in an early draft; he shared a cabin with Tennessee Williams in Massachusetts; William Carlos Williams was a mentor of sorts; Jackson Pollock and Dylan Thomas were his drinking buddies. He spent time in Paris with William Burroughs; lived in Rome; practiced Buddhist meditation in Spain; made the Venice, Calif., "scene" in the late 1960s. Among the friends and acquaintances here are Anais Nin, Ezra Pound, Charles Bukowski, Paul Bowles and John Cage. Yet some of this memoir's most powerful scenes occur far from the glitter, as when Norse recounts his squalid Brooklyn childhood or describes how, while working in a WW II shipyard, he witnessed a black man beaten to death. Photos.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Gay poet and artist Norse is one of those guys who inhabited several literary communities across the globe, from New York's Greenwich Village to Paris, and, as a result, knew everyone and slept with most of them, too. Norse was acquaintanced with writers ranging from W.H. Auden, James Baldwin, Tennessee Williams, William Burroughs, and Allen Ginsberg to Charles Bukowski and Ezra Pound. He recalls them all in this 1989 memoir.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780688067045: Memoirs of a Bastard Angel

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ISBN 10:  0688067042 ISBN 13:  9780688067045
Publisher: William Morrow & Co, 1989
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9780747507567: Memoirs of a Bastard Angel

Trafal..., 1990
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9780747506010: Memoirs of a Bastard Angel

BLOOMS..., 1990
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