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Lawrence Ferlinghetti
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Poet
    (March 24, 1919- )
    Co-founder and owner of City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco (1953)
    Founder of City Lights Publishers (1955)
    Beat Generation icon
    Wrote the poetry collections 'A Coney Island of the Mind,' 'The Secret Meaning of Things,' 'These are My Rivers,' 'A Far Rockaway of the Heart,' 'San Francisco Poems' and 'Americus Book I'
    Appeared in 'The Last Waltz'
    He is a political anarchist and socialist.
    He did not learn to speak English until age five.
    He was a long-time friend of conservative radio host Michael Savage.
    According to Savage, he always ranted about capitalism and worker oppression while eating in restaurants and would leave without tipping the waiter.
    He associated with Marxist poets like Pablo Neruda and Ernesto Cardenal.
    He has a pointless cameo in 'The Last Waltz,' uncomfortably reading a bad poem.
    He was arrested on obscenity charges after publishing Allen Ginsberg's 'Howl and Other Poems' (1957).
    The FBI called him 'a rabble-rouser, a beatnik, and, most probably, insane.'
    He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.
    He was stationed in Nagasaki, Japan after the bombing and became a pacifist after witnessing the widespread devastation.
    He graduated Columbia University and the Sorbonne in Paris.
    His poetry is popular with college students, progressives and bohemians.
    His writings are considered more accessible and appealing than the controversial work of other Beat poets.
    He was named the first Poet Laureate of San Francisco (1998).
    His bookstore was declared a local landmark in San Francisco for its contributions to the city's cultural and literary development (2001).

Credit: Call me Calvin


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