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April 03, 2011


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so sad

What a loss, for all of us

Oh I'm so sorry!

Prince of a friend is right. And a hell of a teacher. I loved his workshop at the New School as I'm sure most of us did. He will be greatly missed.

Sending prayers your way.

Definitely a sad day. Paul was as generous a person as he was brilliant a poet.

Totally devastated.

His loss will be felt. We will miss him dearly.

I am shocked to hear about this. I've known Paul since the 1980s. A great teacher, poet, witty to no end. I will miss him.

Very shocked and saddened to hear this news.

Thanks for your beautiful words, David.

we'll miss you paul.

this is really sad news.

I'm so happy I had the chance to see him recently...very sad...

I feel fortunate to have met him: A real cool character. Thanks for sharing this, David.

Danielle Benveniste and I were just talking yesterday about what a great teacher and person he is, and trying to recite "Counterman" from memory (we didn't get too far). Came home last night thinking I ought to send him an email--got this news instead. He will be missed. Is missed already.

I feel so blessed to have known Paul--as a brilliant teacher, an inspiring poet, and a wonderful friend. His workshop was not only a tremendous learning experience but also the best introduction to New York that I ever could have hoped for. My heart and prayers go out to his family, as well as the larger "family" of students, colleagues, and friends whose lives he brightened.

Thank you, David. Yes, Paul was an incredible poet, teacher, supporter, friend and human being. Blessed be ...

Paul was a true American original whose virtuosity as a poet was breath-taking. This is terrible news. A tremendous loss for all of us.

This is heartbreaking news.

Before almost every class we taught last semester we sat out in the courtyard and smoked for 20 minutes. It was a nice way to get to know him, and he was a kind and funny man. It's such a short time ago. I'm just shocked and sad.

Heartbreaking. I hope you're sitting with O'Hara, Paul. Rest In Peace.

This is beyond sad & heartbreaking. For those grieving (everyone) I really deeply hope your days increase in comfort & healing. I know his memory & the legacy of his amazing work will be and are well-cherished.

The greatest lesson that Paul taught me, I share with all of you in his honor: "The risk of sentimentality is a risk worth taking." Saying that Paul will be greatly missed is a gross understatement, but at times like these, even for us writers there are so few words that adequately convey all we feel and want to say in memory of our dear friend. For those of us that studied under his graceful direction, drank with him after class at Loup, and just plain adored him, we will never forget his sweetness and wit. We were so blessed to have been students of such an incredibly talented, kind-hearted and wickedly funny teacher. I wish him all the red wine, cigarettes and sarcasm Heaven has to offer. ‎"The risk of sentimentality is a risk worth taking." Brave words from a brave man that we will never forget. My heart is broken. Please keep his family, students, colleagues and all those who knew and loved him well in your thoughts and prayers.

In class he was an absolutely brilliant teacher. His range was amazing. I learned so much from him and in the most pleasant and gracious manner. My deepest condolences to all who knew him, because he will be missed by so many.

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I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman

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Ringfinger was nervous
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