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Over the past three decades, John Godfrey has been one of New York City’s most surefooted bards—in any type of weather. Private Lemonade weaves a series of ornate lyrics—sketches of a perennial evening and longing within the hum of traffic.


Since 1969, John Godfrey has lived in Manhattan’s East Village. He is the author of several collections of poetry, including Push the Mule (The Figures, 2001).


Adventures in Poetry began publishing in 1968 as a mimeographed “little magazine,” and continued through 1976 with individual pamphlets, featuring work by Ted Berrigan, William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Bernadette Mayer, Frank O’Hara, James Schuyler, John Ashbery, Anne Waldman, and many others. After a long hiatus, it began publishing books by established and new innovative writers that are available exclusively through Zephyr Press.

Private Lemonade

  • Private Lemonade

    John Godfrey


    100 pages


    ISBN 0-9706250-70-4

  • "John Godfrey stirs up the necessary darkness." — Clark Coolidge


    "While others are busy catching their own reflections in the storefront of poetry, Godfrey goes to work on the damage and squalor of the overlooked. His genius rings true." — Peter Gizzi


    “In the pages of Private Lemonade, Godfrey hands us great gifts of richly unpredictable language, ‘the power and felicity of pronouns,’ an ever alert eye and ear, and a particular human life: these are made manifest and shared with elegance, integrity, and a seriousness always kept from descending to the obvious or solemn by the poets tough and compassionate humor. The city of Stockholm has honored its son August Strindberg by embedding lines of his work in brass letters in the surface of the street where he lived: I wish New York City would do the same for John Godfrey while he strides along the streets he has made so uniquely his own.” — Anselm Hollo

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