Death of New York City


Death Of New York City
Brooklyn, N. Y. : Cool Grove Press, 2003.
ISBN 1-887276-07-6.

Available in print via Amazon.

Death of New York City is a prescient diary made to be read by readers yet unborn, a spiritual journey kept by an alien observer who has recorded with supreme elegance the very nuance of our contemporary world.
Ira Cohen
Nina Zivancevic has a huge compassion and a wisdom mind stream
John Giorno
Nina Zivancevic is a major witness of “things as they are”, the true dharmic calling. Her international poetic “voice” struggles out of samsara’s web, singing loud and clear. Om Ah Hum.
Anne Waldman
You don’t know what she will say, though there are no guises. These poems are clear, in a darkly charming voice, disavowing and avowing, honest and cutting. I like them a lot.
Alice Notley

“THE DEATH OF NEW YORK CITY is a book of poetry that sits constant by the bed. It’s one of those great works that you find yourself dipping into in the early hours when the sleep won’t come. It is equal parts experience and imagination. An elegy for the beat life and an invitation to a new dance. Nina pushes her words way beyond Acker and Ginsberg to a place all her own. The punk metaphysicist! Other civilisations and their attendant cultures seep through the city walls of her poems. Faded brocade ruffles hang from under the sleeves of cracked black leather jackets. Cairo melts into Rome. Brooklyn drag queens stalk Elizabethan courtyards. Police sirens sound over the plaintive lute but always the chance of hope over sadness and the treasuring of memories of the souls we have lost.”

Johny Brown, poet and playwright, Radio Resonance, London.


Some readings by the author from the book (audio)

Three poems from Death of New York City:

I Feel

I feel quite angelic, quite warm
Quite soft, quite frightened,
Typically Catholic (the way Vivaldi felt
When he wrote”4 Seasons’, at his optimum)
My legs quicker than the Transit Authority,
Simply lit October sun.
I don’t need a jacket nor a smile
To wrap myself with
And everyone who sings a song
In the street
Is my brother

Exquisite Corpse

Corpse becomes exquisite through diurnal vivisection
A grave digger is jealous of people who place flowers on his tomb,
Madonna becomes pregnant by a low metaphor
A macho character is impressed by high life,
A dog barks at a hyacinth cloud,
A child is happy when you tell him a bad joke,
A man- unhappy after you rob him of sheer illusion,
Communal living- it’s a necessity that comes with age,
But words!
They get lonely
With no afterthought
To cheer them up!

Royal Chase
(after Nizami)

We walked into the garden
With miniature pine trees, casual deer and
Singing fountains: it was then
That I realized the royal hunt was
Going on, scorched grass,
Illuminated manuscripts smeared with blood,
Santours in flame; the clock- you said-
Was turned here 400 years back
And the battle of Kosovo
Shifted in time, with bright yataghans
And mutilated soldiers: the rigid,
The senseless and the cruel ruled
Your garden, my shah of shahs,
You had to leave Nizami’s garden quickly,
And became a nomad burnt by fame ! I was the last
‘Northern province” of your empire
you fought for, my house disappeared
in heavy bombing, the language
of our children sprinkled with foreign accents,
the angels on Christian frescoes
in distant monasteries had lost their wings,
their flights reduced to nightly escapades
to the cover-pages of some dubious
newspapers where EVERY THING is fit
to print, except for our exiled songs
and our daily worries that bear no
official translator’s stamp.

Also by the author: Living On Air (novel), Letters to Myself (poetry).

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