Poet, publisher and activist Ed Sanders (1939) dropped out of the University of Missouri in 1958 to hitchhike to New York City. There he founded the avant-garde journal ‘Fuck You/A Magazine of the Arts’ a couple of years later and opened his ‘Peace Eye Bookstore’, which soon developed into a hotbed of poetry, art and radical activism. In 1964, the year that Sanders graduated from New York University with a degree in Greek, he founded the seminal countercultural band The Fugs together with poet and performer Tuli Kupferberg. Sanders’ subversive activities in the Lower East Side, described by William Burroughs as a ‘total assault on the culture’, drew the attention of the authorities and led to a police raid of the bookstore in 1966. Sanders was charged with obscenity but won his case and was consequently crowned ‘a leader of New York’s Other Culture’ by Life Magazine. An unstoppable anti-war activist, Sanders took a prominent part in the famous attempt to levitate and exorcise The Pentagon in 1967 and published ‘Thirsting for Peace in a Raging Century: Selected Poems 1961–1985’ twenty years later. Sanders lives in Woodstock, where he has worked on his investigative 9-volume ‘America, A History In Verse’ since 1998.
Ed Sanders’ ‘Broom Poem’, first published in print by Sea Urchin, is a short but powerful anti-war poem written in late 2016 in reaction to the ongoing wars across the globe. ‘Broom Poem’ is a protest song to remind us of the stupidity of war, a chant to exorcise this evil from the world and a much needed call to sweep away bigots and warmongers.
‘Broom Poem’ by Ed Sanders was published in a limited hand made edition of 30 copies, 15 of which are now available from our catalogue. Artwork by Ben Schot.