Daddy always said that if one just stayed put in San Francisco, eventually everyone who mattered would show up here, and then he himself came as if to prove himself correct. I remember him tottering off the plane as though an earthquake was actually happening. And then he came back two other times, never entirely relaxing, but affable enough, like a mint julep. I thought of him tonight when John Giorno came to San Francisco and gave a jubilant reading for the Poetry Center at San Francisco State.
Even if you know nothing about poetry you will remember Giorno as the actor in one of Andy Warhol’s most notorious films, Sleep–Warhol’s first film, made when the artist was 35 years old and looking to try something new. Giorno was 27 and, it is said, Warhol’s boyfriend at the time. The film consists, as many know, of Giorno sound asleep for nearly five and a half hours-there’s a version in which some of the shot footage is repeated to make it last eight hour... More