Andrei Codrescu and the Detroit Artists Workshop at Third Man Records

Detroit Writer’s Guild/All Access Cafe Presents: Andrei Codrescu with a historic reunion of the founders of the Detroit Artists’ Workshop on Tuesday, April 30th at 7 PM-10 PM at Third Man Records (441 West Canfield in Detroit). Call (313) 209-5205.

This evening, the Detroit Writer’s Guild and All Access Cafe present a historic reunion of the founders of the Detroit Artists’ Workshop: John Sinclair, Ken Mikolowski, George Tysh, Chris Tysh, and Robin Eichele

In addition, on Wednesday May 1st, at 6:00 -7:45 PM, Andrei Codrescu will be holding a writer’s workshop at the Detroit Public Library, Explorer’s room.. Joining Codrescu will be Ron English, jazz musician and founding member of the Artists’ Workshop.

This event is organized by the Detroit Writers’ Guild & All Access Cafe. Book Beat will be supplying books for the authors.

Detroit Writer’s Guild and All Access Cafe present a historic reunion of the founders of the Detroit Artists’ Workshop: John Sinclair, Ken Mikolowski, Chris Tysh, George Tysh, Robin Eichele & Bill Harris.

Fundraiser for All Access Cafe: Donate Here


I wrote my first book of poems, License to Carry a Gun (Big Table, 1970), when I first lived in New York City, 1967–1970. Those were troubled times and I was 21 years-old. Decades later the city has changed and the times are still troubled. These poems, 2016–2018, try to find out just how changed my dear city and how troubled my days.

“In his newest collection of lyric poems, the brilliant Andrei Codrescu reveals himself yet again as our funniest/saddest contemporary bard. Newly returned to New York, the city of his youth, Codrescu the flâneur observes the daily disjunctions of Manhattan life in all their absurdity. Astonishingly honest, bittersweet, hilarious, and heart-breaking: no time like now is a book you must read!” –Marjorie Perloff

“Andrei went there as an adolescent (U.S.); later I came here (France): we have known each other forever. I read his new book no time like now and see how similar (semblable) we remain in a zoo world of cellphone-users with customs. Older ones who have mastered their art are left with the glee of language. These poems also contain plenty of love.” –Alice Notley

“On every page of No Time Like Now, Andrei provides us with a poetic tap on the shoulder: ‘We are still in the wine roses goat and sesame seed phase of the revolution.’ In other words, there is as much joy as there is threat in the world, as much threat as there is possibility; we are called to respond, and remember. I hear the echo of Apollinaire’s ‘Zone’ in some of these poems – the way they begin in one place then carom off into stratospheric conjunctions: the line ‘lovers of serial killers guarantee the persistence of art’ followed by a photo of Lee Miller naked in Hitler’s bathtub. His prose poems are like a chance meeting between Kafka, Russell Edson and Lydia Davis at a dinner party where Louise Nevelson rumbles in slinging mamaliga. And we must attend to these surprises because when Andrei was new in America America vibrated ‘in a newness new even to the new world.’ We may not be new anymore, but we aren’t dead yet. This collection repairs and raises our spirit(s).” —Sharon Mesmer


Andrei Codrescu of Transylvania

Andrei Codrescu. I was born in Sibiu, Transylvania, Romania, where in the 16th century they burned witches, in 1989 they shot students, and now citizens don’t flinch when Europe’s second biggest theatre festival sets off fireworks at midnight. I emigrated to Detroit in 1966 where a revolution was in progress. Tanks of the 82nd airborne and National Guard shot at me for sticking my head out the window after the 6pm curfew. To avoid gunfire and meet poets, I moved to New York City in 1966. I didn’t speak English, which made it easy to communicate with natives using sign language. My first poetry book, License to Carry a Gun, won the 1970 Big Table Poetry award, to the chagrin of my contemporaries who were great but, unfortunately, fluent. In 1983, I founded Exquisite Corpse: a Journal of Books & Ideas, taught literature and poetry at Johns Hopkins University, the University of Baltimore, and Louisiana State University (as MacCurdy Distinguished Professor of English). I read fiendishly and used my vulgate and indo-european substratum to keep language from wasting away in the swamp of politico-psycho-bureaucratic trash. Since 1983, I’ve been a regular commentator on NPR’s All Things Considered, because you can’t live on fighting kitsch every minute. I received a Peabody Award for writing and staring in the film Road Scholar, which started out cute but ended up making people cry. In 1989, I returned to my native Romania to cover the fall of the Ceausescu regime for NPR and ABC News, and wrote The Hole in the Flag: an Exile’s Story of Return and Revolution. After this return, I reconnected with Romania’s majestic poetry, and started to write again in my third language (German and Hungarian, respectively the first and second). The result was a separate body of work in Romanian: poetry, essay, collaborations, criticism. English is still my primary language: the site of my books of poetry, novels, essays.

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