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« Charles Trenet, Troubador | Main | Poetry Agon: David Lehman and Kevin Young »

June 20, 2008


Thanks for this post on Uncle Irving, Jenny. I've just been reading about the scandal caused by his elopement with Ellin Mackay, an heiress whose anti-Semitic pop threatened to disown her. (Then came 1929, the stock market crashed, old man Mackay lost everything, and Berlin's songwriting prowess sustained him through the Depression.)You mentioned David Grubin in an earlier comment. I enjoyed his documentary on Jews in America -- as well as earlier ones he did on Napoleon and RFK. Stacey and I met David a few years ago through his daughter Eve, herself a fine poet, who is the poetry editor of "Lyric" and of Nextbook's 'zine.

Hi David: I would be interested in your recommendations on Irving Berlin (where have you been reading about his elopement with Mackey?). The Jews in America documentary meant a lot to me as well. I knew Eve Grubin in her MAKOR days and have kept an eye on her since. I admire her. An innovator and a good soul.

Hi Jenny, I've been reading Edward Jablonski's bio of Berln. It's pretty good. I'm also going to read Berlin's daughter's memoir, which is said to be excellent.

Looking for any information, about Joseph Morris. Was supposed to have played with Irving Berlin at Jim Kelly's Speak Easy, before 1920. Would anyone know of Joseph, Fredreck or William Morris?

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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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