Whitman Was Here – Parachute Literary Arts celebrates Whitman’s 200th!

What thrill to join forces with Amanda Deutch’s dream child, Parachute Literary Arts! Whitman Was Here: Walt Whitman in Coney Island, June 2nd, 2019, was a festival celebrating Walt Whitman’s birthday in a place he loved. He spent time roaming the shore, drinking beer, eating oysters, and shouting poetry to the ocean. Our reading took place on West 21st Street and the boardwalk and was a part of the Walt Whitman Initiative. Poets dug their toes and words into the sand for this ethereal reading.

What a line up of spectacular poets! Marinan Blitchteyn, Cliff Fyman, Stephanie Gray, Barbara Henry, Patricia Spears Jones, Tracie Morris, Urayoán Noel, Anna Vitale, Ian Dreiblat, Poets from the Worker Writers School, Bushwick Book Club, singer Carol Lipnik, actor Tim Cusack, hosted by Richard Eagan. Tornado warnings, lightning on the horizon, dance music – as poet, Tracie Morris proclaimed – the ghost of Whitman was with us!

(photo by Jim McDonnell)
poet from the Worker Writers School (photo by Jim McDonnell)
Marina Blitshteyn
Urayoán Noel
Patricia Spears Jones
(photo by Jim McDonnell)
Anna Vitale
Tim Cusack as glittering Whitman (photo by Jim McDonnell)
Amanda Deutch in front of the historic Child’s Building (photo by Jim McDonnell)
Volunteer Ariana Podesta chalks the Coney boardwalk (photo by Jim McDonnell)
The fabulous Amanda Deutch
Kool Whitman (aka Ed Zeizel) – seated in an original Parachute Jump seat at Kitchen 21, who hosted our event.
Whitman Sprout (aka Parker Z)