Carl Solomon

Carl Solomon

About Carl Solomon

Carl Solomon was an American poet and writer. In his travels overseas, Solomon became exposed to Surrealism and Dada, ideas that would inspire him throughout his life. In Paris, he witnessed Antonin Artaud give a screaming poetry reading—this so impressed him that he would remain a disciple of Artaud for much of his life. One of Solomon's best-known poems and writing is Report from the Asylum: Afterthoughts of a Shock Patient. It is an account of the shock-therapy treatment used to treat patients in asylums, drawn directly from personal experience. It was written with Antonin Artaud somewhat in mind, because he had received the same treatment himself, when he was unjustly institutionalized by the French government. This piece was included in the 50th-anniversary Howl facsimile, as part of an appendix.
In the late 1960s, Solomon published two chapbooks of prose poems with Mary Beach's Beach Books, Texts & Documents, distributed by City Lights Books: Mishaps, Perhaps (1966) and More Mishaps (1968). Emergency Messages (published in 1989), features selections from the two books, along with some of Solomon's other autobiographical, critical and poetic writings. During his life, Solomon was also a frequent contributor to New Directions Annual, American Book Review, and The New Leader.

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