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Blog posts by Kristofer Collins

Kristofer Collins is the Books Editor at Pittsburgh Magazine, as well as being a frequent contributor to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He is the publisher of Low Ghost Press and Coleridge Street Books. He also manages Caliban Book Shop (and owns Desolation Row Records located inside).


I first met the poet Frank O'Hara in the early 1990s. I was in the process of abandoning the writing program I was enrolled in at a local university for the much less muddied waters of the religious studies department; and, for his part, Frank had been dead for a little over twenty-five years. Frank O'Hara died at 8:50 p.m. on July 25, 1966 at Bayview General Hospital on Long Island. Mark Ford, editor of O'Hara's Selected Poems (2008) , succinctly describes the events of the previous evening, a night O'Hara spent with his friends Morris Golde, J. J. Mitchell, and Virgil Thomson clubbing on Fire Island. “The beach taxi in which he and his friend J. J. Mitchell were traveling broke down. As they waited for a replacement to arrive, a Jeep approaching from the opposite direction swerved to avoid the stranded taxi and travelers, and it struc... [more]