photo by Judith Scherr
photo by Judith Scherr /berkeleyside

Although he was not elected Mayor of Berkeley'
Mark's participation and program suggestions did help open the dialog on some very the important issues. (News reports of his candicacy platform
can be viewed HERE.

* last news received about poet Mark Swartz

Good Samaritans set up fund for Berkeley train victim
October 22, 2013 11:46 am by Emilie Raguso

Mark Schwartz was born in the Bronx and lived in a Jewish neighborhood in the Kingsbridge section. Mark was never barmitzvahed. He went to DeWitt Clinton High School, where he graduated third in his class of over 1000 students.He went to Cornell University at the age of 16, the youngest in his freshman class. He graduated 4 years later, again the youngest in his class, and went on to work for the Federal Aviation Administration, Union Carbide, Harvard University, Camp Equinunk, GTE Products Corp, and Viacom.

Mark was diagnosed manic depressive in Jamuary 1981. He became a regular at open poetry readings: in 1981 at the Cloud House, '82 at the Roxie, Spaghetti Factory in '83, Cafe Chelsea '83, Rose and THistle in '85, Cafe Babar in '87, and Paradise Lounge in '88. At one time,Mark was emceeing the poetry readings at Sacred Grounds,Yakety Yak and Cafe Prague. Mark wrote over 1000 poems, most of which were lost. His "to know no boundries" poem was stolen by Merill Lynch in Sept. '86 and used as a commercial.


Mark Schwartz poetry is included in the The Sacred Grounds Anthology (Minotaur Press, 2000) and in Journal, including erbafoglio, Haight-Ashbury Literary Journal, North Coast Literary Review, Oxygen, and The Café Review

It was a tie-dye day
and Kaufman was golden down the road from the park
it must have been the sun, the crowd, the beat
as he looked everywhere but at me.

I remember him waiting
as if for fog to lift from the over-plagued City
of homeless, of AIDS, of victims of long-ago lands
of Jones and Milk

he was bedshakes and earthquakes
and poetry stages' crowds repeating line
after Kaufman after Eliot

Schwartz shows, Spaghetti Factory huddles
and Kaufman slinks over, waiting for a drunk
and the Chelsea, three year running open
Kaufman and Lynne, elegant and alive
cutting-in to read, Moe on the side

Kaufman on the outside for a Mark Schwartz reading
if only I'd told the messenger I'd be glad to see him
we lost him in our light weight
Bob Kaufman could have died after after that episode


it's cold

and in Judaic style, I turn
the page of the New York Times 180 degrees to the ground
noting the title to say Bob Kaufman
died of emphysema - and not lonliness !
                                     and not alcohol !
                                     and not old age !

the halls of Central Park, 42nd Street library, humming
of rollers and whispers of someone, maybe me getting shot.
maybe this means whiskey, or beer. God knows where.
Avoid East 5th Street and maybe I'll live to eat peanut butter
and Kosher jelly with bananas in a boycott against time.
Bob Kaufman, wherever you are, old friend, you live with me
black, black and taking photos of your room within the moon.

©Mark Schwartz
from The Cafe Review


Monday, May 17, 2002

Here above plentitude
are the homeless people
reading their People’s Tribune
and drinking cappuccinos
an arc of water in crystal rainbow
bathes their feet
in rivers ending in tributaries
far from the desert of the nomads
where salt lines the tongue
until sand crumbles in corners of eyes
“ will you wear my eyes”
asks the poet Bob Kaufman
in a drunk oblivion chewing a cop’s ear
while Micheline pisses on the cop’s feet
beneath the green corner building in North Beach
clowns wearing street clothes
dream in colored jingle bells
christmas lights and the red and green
of rain soaked streets
and the earthworm crosses the road

with Eric


One thing that is good about the war
is that it took one’s mind off the earthquake
which took one’s mind off the drought
which took one’s mind off the homeless
which took one’s mind off of sex
which took one’s mind off.

with Jerry 1/16/91

San Francisco Beatnik performance poet Mark Schwartz
uses language in unique ways to protest and subtly mock
war, racism, conformity and other wrongs he saw in post
WWII America.
George Teseleanu 's review
(Synchronized Chaos. June 1st, 2012)

Mark Schwartz's San Francisco poems

Mark Schwartz's poem for Allen Cohen
& one of Allen Cohen's poem for Mark
Allen Cohen Tributes and Memories

Red, white and blue in the rain

Red for the murdered Zapatistas in Chiapas
     the slaughtered Indians in westward movement
     the blood of HIV-positive people

White for the oppressive class
     the innocence and naivete of the social condition of
     the blindness

Blue for the end of profits, money, credit cards,banks
     for the feeling I get when I feel the condition we're in
     the homeless

The rain is giving us new perspective
It is washing away the fear to change
The earth is being replenished
And we are thinking, ready to act.

Mark Schwartz, from 'A Picture is WORTH 62 Words'

Historical Essay by Mark Schwartz & Art Peterson
originally published in The Semaphore #181, Fall 2007

Mark Schwartz poet

Mark's Pink Daisy

Mark's rubbing his tummy
like a round Buddha in reflection
looking at the pink daises
"Where have been for two weeks?
The flowers are wilting everywhere," he says
"Even Kyoto is barren, "chimes in
Chuck Bernstein, the jazz drummer and world traveler
Mark says I should convey
this messsage to the world,
"Bring me a flower to smell,
a lover to love, a dream
to shine through the smog."

A poem for Mark by Allen Cohen
Poem for Allen by Mark Schwartz

And Only This; (for Mark Schwartz) by Brian M Morrisey

Me and Jack



Beat poet joins crowded field for Berkeley mayoral race.
Berkeleyside Independent, July 19, 2012 8:00 am by Judith Scherr

Bates Faces Challengers
Schwartz is a longtime activist and a published poet.
His three-point platform includes reducing carbon monoxide poisoning by creating a plaza between Bancroft Way and Dwight Way, establishing affordable housing for the homeless and
creating solar-driven transportation from Berkeley to the city of Albany.
( 7, 2012/ Rebecca Rosen Lum

Two candidates file paperwork to run against Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates
“I think we should have a healthy base for mayor rather than re-electing the mayor,”said Cynthia Papermaster, a peace and justice community activist. “I think (Schwartz) would be a good opponent to talk about these issues with the community (through) dialogue and debate.  Daily Californian (June 6, 2012) by Daphne Chen | Staff

On Third Street Kerouac Revisited
On Third Street Kerouac Revisited

These poems drift into our subconscious wit the sound of a town crier, a thinker, a dreamer.
Many of these poems are dreams. In some magical way, Schwartz captures captures the essence of pre-yuppie San Francisco.
Bravo Mark!....  Joie Cook

(Magenta Press, San Francisco, California: 2009)
27 pages, 25 poems, $5.00.

Most poets like to hide behind whatever is handy: Marilyn Monroe’s shopping cart, tradition, a FEDEX collection box, a 4" X 7" thin screen, a piece of lemon meringue pie jammed into a coffee mug or their latest poem.

Mark Schwartz bares it all: without the thinnest coat
of varnish, but not without an overwhelming tsunami
of love. His lyricism, so honest and direct, would scare the pants off hot shot Byron and the henna rinse out of Sarah Bernhart’s eye brows. Schwartz is fearless.

On Third Street: Jack Kerouac Re-visited is indeed the archetypal slender volume. However, the contents, a refreshing combination of applied Zen and espresso highs, are much bigger than dreams and much wilder than life.

Reviewed by Marvin R. Hiemstra @


“The Last Words of Ronald Sauer and Mark Late at Night in Specs’” snappily terminates On Third Street:
Jack Kerouac Re-visited with dry Zen humor."

Ronald: “If you’re not going to buy me a drink,

I’m leaving.”

Mark: “Good night, Ronald.” 
Mark Schwartz is more left than left in feeding the bereft, and his very wit is a pox upon yuppiedom.
Some call him fool or hypocrite, but there is no denying the guy's got courage and is a hell of a lot funnier than Feminists & Moslems on Prozac and like the air, he's omni-present, indispensable and harder to see through every day....Ronald F. Sauer, S.F.

Another good thing about Mark Schwartz:

Mark is a very talented poet and a hilarious dinner companion not to mention he is an absolute ace at locating the elusive parking space in North Beach (one night, I drove around the block a dozen times, ran into Mark at the corner of Pacific and Grant, he asked if he could help me find a parking place, jumped in my car, and I swear to God, somebody pulled out of a space about 1/3 of a block away). If you spend any time at all in the land of North Beachia, you will understand how rare THAT is! ...Judy Joy Jones

More Books by Mark Schwartz
Exquisite Schwartz Poet Duets and Combos 2
Exquisite Schwartz
poet duets and combos2

Berkeley, CA : CC. Marimbo ; ©2002

"And Now Then"
(Beatitude Press)

Calliope press ©2002

Revolutionary Notebook
Not Just My Own

Haikus to Fool With
The Joke's on Me,
joke book
Mark Schwartz Explodes


Dream ProseMark Schwartz Dream Prose CD


Mark Schwartz suggested Program for Berkeley

  • affordable Housing for homeless and students.
  • Plaza for Telegraph Avenue between Bancroft and Dwight Way to reduce noise and air pollution, provide places for people to gather and talk, induce musicians and poets to perform, and aid merchants in their in their businesses.
  • Promote and High power Solar driven transportation system that will include Albany, Richmond, Oakland and Berkeley, with a ferry going to San Francisco from the Marina
  • Tents in Ohlone, Willard and Provo Parks, so that homeless do not have to sleep on concrete sidewalks

His Experience & Background:

• Graduate of Cornell University, with a degree in engineering.
• Published poet.
• Co-founder of the East Bay Caucus of the Harvey Milk Gay Democratic Club, and a member of its current Political Action Committee.
• Original member of the Occupy Movement, which started in San Francisco ( same time as Occupy Wall Street). Partook in Occupy Berkeley, Occupy Oakland, and Occupy Cal.
Served on Occupy San Francisco Finance Working Committee on Legislation of California, KALX. and Livermore Conversion Project.
• Volunteer for KPFA and Courage to Resist (Bradley Manning).
• Attends county and state meetings of the Green Party. Supports the Peace and Freedom Party platform and program,and serves as an elector for the Rocky Anderson for President campaign.
• Served as a temporary member of the Rules Committee of the Democratic National Convention, based on support for the ERA and being openly lesbian or gay.
• Studied constitutional and environmental law at Cornell.
• Member of the Social Justice Committee of the Fellowship of Unitarian -Universalists.
Attends Quaker meetings and Congregation Sha'ar Zahar ( a LGBT synagogue).

On the Issues:

• No on S (sit-lie). Arrested in San Francisco for sit/lie, and now doing community service for Mumia and Tenants Union. Civil liberties issue.
• Yes on T. Likes the idea of the technology for alternative fuel and medicine, but wishes a moratorium on genetic development, to prevent "Andromeda Strain" possibility. Will provide jobs and industry that does not produce noise pollution. Desires 45-foot height limit.
• Yes on 30. Important to create tax money for education. Good compromise with Occupy's version of the initiative.
• Yes on 34. Death penalty? The state should not be in any position to murder anyone.
• Yes on 37. Label Genetically engineered food

For peace and justice,
Mark Schwartz

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