www.agentofchaos.com presents guest poet laureate of cuyahoga county daniel thompson

Daniel Thompson, 1935 - 2004
comments on the Poet Laureate of Cuyahoga County

Double X published by Jim Lang  the Homeless Grapevine published by Jim Lang  Junkstock 9, 1989

daniel thompson poetry
fotos 1935-2004
more links

messages from friends & strangers on daniel thompson
his life, poetry, death


depending on time, space and applicability, i will try to add
any comments or photos sent to me
tho i make no promises


040506==3 am
daniels train pulled out this morning

MELISSA J. CRAIG a.k.a. FIELD MARSHALL MAY MIDWEST back in early Daniel days

Been thinking of Daniel and being glad he can rest now. Way way way back, way before I met you even,
when I was cute little baby girl artist drunk, Daniel was one of the first people to really look at my work,
believe in me, let me know I indeed had things to say and he for one wanted to see them. And it didn't
matter I had a cute face or long legs it was what I did, what was in my brain that mattered. A rare thing
back then when it seemed like all anybody wanted was a piece of me...though once many years later at
Junkstock when I said something about shaving my legs, he said he was shocked because I was his idol
and how could I do something so nonfeminist and that confused me and made me laugh for years, still does.

I don't know where I'm going with this except that it seems important to write it, write now. Maybe just
that another wee stone in my foundation, one right down there on the bottom that helped hold the rest up
has dematerialized, transferred...still there but can't be seen anymore.


I'm speechless.


Where will we go without him?


we will miss him.   he was famous in the neighborhood...


that is so strange Lang said that ... I spent a little time at the hospital and was able to say a small good bye...
I felt his blood pump through his arm and kissed him on the head... We got home around 11pm

I woke with a dream approx. 3 am.. That morning ... my kids were all in a car...( but different from my real
one)  We were driving near a train track and they all wanted to stick their heads out of the sun roof and watch
it go... I was saying no no cause I thought it too close for comfort... My oldest Nicholas seemed to disregard
my no's and he accidentally leaped out... and I saw him fall very close to that train... I woke crying and screaming.... perhaps it was Daniel's train....

I am sure we will be seeing each other soon.   Peace and out,   jd


assume you've heard.  Heart is very heavy.  Service is Monday 7 p.m. at Church of the Covenant.


In Memory of Daniel

The rain poured down when Daniel died.
Not a deluge from the skies,
But tears of sadness from our eyes.
His poetry is effulgent
With beauty and bright light.
His spirit will inspire us as we organize to fight
To bring to birth a new world from the ashes of the old.
We'll create a world of justice, of sharing, and of love.
And Dan will be there smiling from heaven up above.
Daniel Thompson Presente

May 9, 2004


Hi Steven, Here is a slightly altered version of the statement I made at the Immigrant Rights Event in Daniel's memory.

Daniel Thompson lived a full, active, creative, and loving life;and hewas a positive influence on everyone with whom he came in contact. His life involved the confluence of three things.

. First, of all: Daniel was an incredibly gifted poet. Not only did he create wonderful poetry, but he encouraged others to become involved in this art form. He worked continuously to make poetry accessible to everyone. Many years ago, he organized a group called Street Poets, and he also gave poetry workshops in the local prisons. He organized the annual Junkstock Poetry readings and conducted poetry seminars in many schools, colleges, and homeless shelters. All of these events were directed at ordinary folks, not the cognoscenti.

Secondly, Daniel was a thoughtful, well-read and articulate political thinker. Dan made no secret of his commitment to the ideal of a peaceful, socialist world, based on love, justice, and sharing; and much of his poetry reflects his anger at the injustices in our current society and his idealistic hope for a new and better world.

Thirdly, Daniel was a life long activist in the struggle for justice. He participated in the Civil Rights sit-ins in the late fifties and sixties, and spent time in jail as a result of his involvement. He played an active and inspiring role during the anti-war movement of the sixties and seventies, again spending time in jail for peaceful protest. He demonstrated in behalf of the homeless and striking workers; he demonstrated against NAFTA and the welfare cuts that took place in the nineties, and right up until his death, he spoke out and demonstrated against Bush’s unjustified invasion of Iraq.

In this sense, Daniel followed a long and great American tradition–the tradition of Julia Ward Howe, Joe Hill, Woody Guthrie, Paul Robeson, and Cleveland’s own Langston Hughes. And like Joe Hill, Dan’s spirit will always be with us when we organize and fight for peace and justice.



DAMN and also Hallelujia-
I hope the ride was sweet for him.
He sure sweetend it for the rest of us-


Wonderful tribute. Daniel, Amy and Smith: together and individually, brought me to the world of poetry. You the wordsmith, Sparks a story teller, and Daniel our city's street poet - the people's poet. And for Smith and Wilcox, an intergral part of our exploration of the "installation." The reading for our "shoe store opening" was important and rewarding to all involved. However; the tri c west "non-opening" will remain the most poigniant event I shared with Daniel. That night Daniel brought his special poet's magic to the event. His "non-reading" to the sounds of sanding away the exhibit defined a special night in our fair city"s cultural history. Thank you Daniel. Thank you Smith.


he's the first poet i'll really miss, tho it would be fun to see steve melton (aka steve e gloom) again.

alphabetical index of commentors
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Peter Ball
Judith Brandon
Melissa J. Craig a.k.a. Field Marshall May Midwest
Joan of Art (Deveney)
Jim Lang
Sheila Long
Stewart Robinson I
Stewart Robinson II
Amy Bracken Sparks
S. Judson Wilcox
Beth Wolfe

Daniel Thompson 1935 - 2004
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
35 Daniel Thompson poems
funeral service 5.10.2004
Daniel ArtCrimes index
coeditor ArtCrimes 12
editor ArtCrimes 4
fotos 1935-2004

depending on time, space and applicability, i will try to add
any comments or photos sent to me
but i make no promises

some fotos by jim lang / other fotos & webwork by steven b. smith

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