About Paul BlackburnPaul Blackburn (November 24, 1926 – September 13, 1971) was an American poet. He influenced contemporary literature through his poetry, translations and the encouragement and support he offered to fellow poets. Blackburn played an important part in the poetry community, particularly in New York, where he helped fledgling poets develop. He provided logistical and emotional support for writers coming to the city and opportunities to read for both unknown and established writers in the various reading series with which he was involved. He organized readings that offered work from the Beats, the New York School, the Deep Image Poets, and the Black Mountain Poets. Clayton Eshleman has written, "Many, not just a few, but many poets alive today are beholden to him for a basic artistic kindness, for readings, yes, and for advice, but more humanly for a kind of comradeship that very few poets are willing to give". The readings Blackburn organized were the direct progenitors to the St. Mark's Poetry Project on Bowery. Additionally, Blackburn's commitment to recording readings that he organized and attended produced the most comprehensive oral history of the New York poetry scene between the late 1950s and 1970.