This is a poem I composed when I was able to see in perspective the summer of 1967 (THE Summer of '67), which I spent as a true drop-out in the East Village. As a former Yale graduate school student in Psychology, that summer I got to know, meet, and/or rub shoulders with Harvard drop-out Timothy Leary, artist Peter Max, Alan Ginsberg, Ed Sanders and Tuli of the Fugs, Abbie Hoffman, Nico of the Velvet Underground, Louis Abalofia - artist and "King of the Hippies," Paul Krassner, Lenny Horowitz - N.Y. Times art critic, Diahnne Abbot (before she married De Niro), poetess Anne Waldman, and many of the early and original spiritually-oriented hippies and anonymous drop-outs and Village denizens, some of whom I met at the old Paradox Restaurant on E. 7th street - a popular macrobiotic eatery and gathering place.
That summer the "flower child" movement had a distinctive Franciscan flavor, until it succumbed to the forces of hedonism and sunk into the abyss of Woodstock two years later. Ironically, it was a book called The Little Flowers of St. Francis that restored my Catholic faith, as the decade of the 70's began.
This poem, written shortly before I rediscovered the True Faith, was inspired by my love for P. M.
The front entrance of the Paradox Restaurant on E. 7th St. NYC