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Michael McClure (Michael Thomas McClure) Biography

(1932– ), (Michael Thomas McClure), Passage, Hymns to St Geryon

American poet, born in Marysville, Kansas, educated at the University of Wichita and San Francisco State University. In 1962 he commenced teaching at the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland. His reputation as a poet was established during the San Francisco Renaissance; collections of his earlier verse, which repeatedly displays violently passionate imagery and language, include Passage (1956), Hymns to St Geryon (1959), and The New Book: A Book of Torture (1961). His beliefs concerning the physical origins of poetry directly inform the experimentation with oral modes in Ghost Tantras (1964). Among his later collections, in which a more meditative tone and a sustained ecological concern become apparent, are Star (1971), Jaguar Skies (1975), Antechamber (1978), and Fragments of Perseus (1983); Selected Poems appeared in 1986. The best-known of McClure's dramatic works, which frequently centre on bizarrely imaginative conceptions, is The Beard (1965), an erotic dialogue between Jean Harlow and Billy the Kid; his other plays include Gargoyle Cartoon (1971), Gorf (1976), and Josephine the Mouse Singer (1980). Among his other publications are the novels The Mad Cub (1970) and The Adept (1971) and the collections of essays Meat Science Essays (1963), Scratching the Beat Surface (1982), and Specks (1985). See also underground poetry.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Harriet Martineau Biography to John McTaggart (John McTaggart Ellis McTaggart) Biography