The d.a. levy collection

WCLV Poetry Seminar Radio Program with d.a. levy

Poetry Seminar was a weekly radio show that aired Saturday afternoons in Cleveland on station WCLV in the early-mid 1960s, when the station was still located in the Eastgate Shopping Center in Mayfield Heights, Ohio. The show, hosted by local poet Jau Billera, provided a forum for poets to talk about poetry and promote their work.

The following two programs are undated but the first is believed to have been broadcast in September or October of 1963. The second sometime in 1964 (based on references in the program to books that weren't published until 1964 by Keys and Katzman). Both Kent Taylor and d.a. levy were guests multiple times.

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Program 1

  • Listen to the entire program (23:38)
  • Listen by segment to Kent's poetry:
    • Part 1: Kent reads poems "Deluth" - "Motion" - "Ships" (2:46)
    • Part 2: Kent reads poems "A Part of Time" - "Los Angeles" (1:22)
  • Guest: Kent Taylor, Cleveland Poet
  • Date: September or October, 1963

In this episode, host Jau Billera talks with fellow poet Kent Taylor. Among other things the two discuss poetic expression, "defining" d.a. levy and the emerging artistic renaissance of the time with Kent reading articles on the topic by Los Angeles Times writer Lawrence Lipton. Kent reads five of his original poems, noting which were published in Free Lance Magazine and his Selected Poems of Kent Taylor (Renegade Press).

Note: Kent's wife Joan (Czaban, also d.a. levy's cousin) did the taping. The first few minutes of Jau reading poet Dan Propper's "Fable of the Final Hour" poem were missed as well as a few second gap mid-way when she reversed the tape, which runs out before the end of the program.

Kent Taylor's work, including the poems above can be found at The Michael Schwartz Library, Cleveland State University.

Program 2

  • Listen to entire program, including program introduction featuring Jau Billera reading an untitled poem written by Detroit poet Will Martin (29:06)
  • Listen by segment:
    • Part 1: Free Lance editors discuss submission selection and editing process (15:57)
    • Part 2: d.a. levy reads "Sun poem" (2:59)
    • Part 3: Adeleade Simon reads "Civil rights no.2" (1:32)
    • Part 4: Russell Atkins reads "Expectation" (2:37)
    • Part 5: Discussion about Renegade Press and Free Lance (2:54)
  • Guests: Adelaide Simon, Russell Atkins and d.a. levy, Cleveland poets and editors of Free Lance and Free Lance Poetry and Prose Workshop
  • Date: 1964

In this episode, host Jau Billera interviews Free Lance editor and founder Russell Atkins along with fellow editors and poets Adelaide Simon and d.a levy. The guests talk about the poetry selection and editing process, citing examples of work submitted to the magazine. Afterwards each reads one of their original poems. The show ends with a brief discussion about levy's Renegade Press.

Note: From the quality of the recording (fair-to-poor) it's likely that the recording was made off the radio. The recording was done for the Fenn College Poetry Center.

Books of poetry by the guests (and host) can be found at the Michael Schwartz Library at Cleveland State University and some of it available in digital format on the d.a. levy collection site.

Credits and appreciation:

We wish to express our gratitude to to Kent Taylor for donating Program 1 and for providing us with details of the taping and to Mark Taylor for the program's audio digitization and delivery. Thanks also to Al Nozak in the Center for Instructional Technology & Distance Learning at Cleveland State University for digitizing and editing the audio for Program 2.

Special thanks goes to Robert Conrad at WCLV for granting us permission to digitize and stream both programs.