Sparring With Beatnik Ghosts - An Evening of Poetry

Thursday, September 19, 2013 - 7:00pm

The Mystic Boxing Commission presents Sparring With Beatnik Ghosts, Round 52. The Spar will be led by M.C. Gerald Nicosia and feature three generations of the Beat Generation. Incredible Bay Area spoken word talents performing include 1st generation Beat Joanna McClure; 2nd generation Beats Latif Harris and Nicosia; third generation Beats Michelle Tea and Ali Liebegott. Read more at

Ali Liebegott is an award-winning American author, poet, and teacher. She has taught creative writing at University of California, San Diego and Mills College. She currently lives in San Francisco. Liebegott is a recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts. As of 2013 she has written three books: The Beautifully Worthless; The IHOP Papers; and Cha-Ching.

Daniel Yaryan is founder of the Sparring With Beatnik Ghosts multi-media poetry super-series .  He is a poet, writer, graphic designer and event producer. He resurrected Poetry Festival Santa Cruz in 2012, created the Lawrence Ferlinghetti Day celebration in 2011 and is regarded by Los Angeles poet Wanda Coleman as "one of the new generation of poetry mavens."

Gerold Nicosia is a biographer, historian, playwright, novelist and poet, whose work has been closely associated with the Beat Movement as well as the 1960’s. He came to prominence with the publication of Memory Babe: A Critical Biography of Jack Kerouac in 1983, a book that earned him the Distinguished Young Writer Award from the National Society of Arts and Letters. Nicosia has taught Beat literature, the Sixties, and the Vietnam War around the world.

Joanna McClure's poems reveal the story of a central woman writer of the San Francisco Beat generation counterculture. Married to Beat poet Michael McClure soon after she arrived in San Francisco in 1954, Joanna McClure became a significant figure in the Beat poetry scene. In the late 1950s she began publishing her work in literary journals and chapbooks, and her first book of poems, Wolf Eyes, was published in 1974. 

Latif Harris has contributed to the San Francisco/North Beach literary scene since 1959. In addition to his publications of poetry, articles, reviews and various anthologies. Harris has published 11 books of poetry, including A Bodhisattva’s Busted Truth.

Michelle Tea grew up in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Influenced by poet Eileen Myles and photographer Nan Goldin, Tea writes narrative poetry and prose that explore issues of class, queer identity, feminism, and autobiography. Her numerous books include the poetry collection The Beautiful: Collected Poems (2003), the novels Valencia (2000) and Rose of No Man’s Land (2006), and memoirs Rent Girl (2004, illustrated by Lauren McCubbin), The Chelsea Whistle (2002), and The Passionate Mistakes and Intricate Corruption of One Girl in America (1998). Tea has won a Lambda Literary Award and was Zale Writerin-Residence at Tulane University. She founded the literary nonprofit RADAR Productions and, with Sini Anderson, the spoken word tour Sister Spit. In 2012 Tea partnered with City Lights Publishers to form the Sister Spit imprint.