Visual Poetry

Buddhist Third Class Junkmail Oracle

As poet, artist and publisher, d.a. levy was an important literary and underground figure in Cleveland's emerging poetry and small/alternative press scene in the early 1960s and continued to be until his untimely death in 1968. levy documented his love-hate relationship with thecity and the politics of the day through his poetry and art which today provides a unique political and social perspective of 1960s Cleveland. Considered a visionary by many of his contemporaries, levy transcended the geographical boundaries of the city as well, with his work acknowledged by such nationally renowned poets as Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder.
As the self-publishing and mimeograph revolution of the 1960s era unfolded, levy, using a second-hand letterpress, published the works of many Cleveland poets including Russell Salmon, Kent Taylor, Russell Atkins and Grace Butcher through his Renegade Press and later Seven FlowersPress publications. He created and published some of Cleveland's original alternative press publications; the Buddhist Third Class Junkmail Oracle and Marrahwana Quarterly at times distributing them on the streets of Cleveland for free. He became a local symbol for Freedom of Speech after he was arrested and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor in 1966 at a poetry reading in which he allowed juveniles to read work that was deemed obscene by city officials. It was shortly after pleading no contest to a similar charge in another case later in 1968 that levy tragically took his own life at the age of 26.

The Buddhist Third Class Junkmail Oracle is an early, key, mimeograph publication which was not only a flashpoint for freedom of speech and poetics but was also a radical example of collage and underground publishing.

No.1 June 1967 [PDF, 4.9mb]

No.3 August 1967 [PDF, 7.4mb]

No.6 August 1967 [PDF, 14.4mb]

August-September 1967 [PDF, 7.3mb]

October 1967 [PDF, 4.2mb]

Vol.1 No.8 November-December 1967 [PDF, 8.8mb]

Vol.1 No.9 1968 [PDF, 8.8mb]

Vol.1 No.11 March-April 1968 [PDF, 18.3mb]

No.12 April-May 1968 [PDF, 14.3mb]

No.13 June 1968 [PDF, 8.7mb]

Vol.2 No.3 August-September 1968 [PDF, 21.2mb]

November 1968 [PDF, 23.4mb]

Vol.2 No.5 December 1968 [PDF, 22.7mb]

February 1969 [PDF, 20.6mb]

June 1969 [PDF, 6.6mb]

July 1969 [PDF, 21.7mb]

August 1969 [PDF, 7.3mb]

September 1969 [PDF, 7.6mb]

October 1969 [PDF, 24mb]

December 1969 [PDF, 22mb]