The Collected Poems of Frank O’Hara (1974)

1960s: Days of Rage


“I first met the poet Frank O’Hara in the early 1990s. I was in the process of abandoning the writing program I was enrolled in at a local university for the much less muddied waters of the religious studies department; and, for his part, Frank had been dead for a little over twenty-five years. Frank O’Hara died at 8:50 p.m. on July 25, 1966 at Bayview General Hospital on Long Island. Mark Ford, editor of O’Hara’s Selected Poems (2008) [not to be confused by The Selected Poems of Frank O’Hara, 1974], succinctly describes the events of the previous evening, a night O’Hara spent with his friends Morris Golde, J. J. Mitchell, and Virgil Thomson clubbing on Fire Island. ‘The beach taxi in which he and his friend J. J. Mitchell were traveling broke down. As they waited for a replacement to arrive, a Jeep approaching from the opposite direction swerved…

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