East Hill Farm by Gordon Ball
Seasons with Allen Ginsberg

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Synopsis

“This was Allen Ginsberg,” Gordon Ball declared after recounting intimate moments with the cultural icon and beloved Beat Generation poet on East Hill Farm, outside Cherry Valley, New York.

During the late 1960s, when peace, drugs, and free love were direct challenges to conventional society, Allen Ginsberg, treasurer of the Committee on Poetry, Inc., funded what he hoped was “a haven for comrades in distress” in rural upstate New York. First described as an uninspiring, dilapidated four-bedroom house with acres of untended land, including the graves of its first residents, East Hill Farm became home to those who sought pastoral enlightenment in the presence of Ginsberg’s brilliance and generosity.

A self-declared member of a “ragtag group of urban castoffs,” including Gregory Corso, Peter Orlovsky, Herbert Huncke, and the mythic Barbara Rubin, farm manager Ball tended to a non-stop flurry of guests, chores, and emotional outbursts while also making time to sit quietly with Ginsberg and discuss poetry, Kerouac, sex, and America's war in Vietnam.

In honest and vivid prose, Ball offers a rare intimate glimpse of the poetic pillar of the Beat Generation as a striving and accessible human being at home on the farm and in the world.
 

About Gordon Ball

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Gordon Ball was born in Paterson, New Jersey and grew up in Tokyo, Japan. Ball is also the author of 66 Frames: A Memoir and a volume of prose poems, Dark Music . His photographs, ldquo;Ginsberg & Beat Fellows,rdquo; have appeared in many publications and have been exhibited widely. He lives in Lexington, Virginia, and teaches at VMI.
 
Published November 15, 2011 by Counterpoint. 482 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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