March 24, 1919 – February 22, 2021
Lawrence Ferlinghetti was an American poet, painter, and publisher, born in Yonkers, New York in 1919. He is best known as the founder of the legendary San Francisco bookstore City Lights, which served as a hub for the Beat Generation and counterculture movements of the 1950s and 60s. Ferlinghetti himself was an influential figure in the Beat movement, publishing works by Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and other influential writers. He was also an accomplished poet, known for his political activism and wit, as well as his mastery of the form of the long poem. Ferlinghetti's own poetry collections include "A Coney Island of the Mind" (1958) and "Starting from San Francisco" (1961). He passed away in 2021 at the age of 101.