Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Ollamh-Poet of Brigid


Motivation: I will keep the accords
Face of: City Lights Books
High Concept
Ollamh-Poet of Brigid
Other Aspects
Well-Traveled; Fight the Good Fight; Words are my Weapons; I Won’t Take Sides
Alertness: Good (3)
Athletics: Average (1)
Contacts: Good (3)
Conviction: Great (4)
Craftsmanship: Fair (2)
Discipline: Good (3)
Empathy: Great (4)
Endurance: Average (1)
Investigation: Fair (2)
Lore: Superb (5)
Performance: Superb (5)
Presence: Good (3)
Rapport: Great (4)
Scholarship: Good (3)
Others default to Mediocre (0)
Counselor (Empathy): Justify recovery from Moderate or Severe Mental or Physical consequences.
Lorekeeper (Lore): add 2 to Lore when performing arcane research.
Act the Part (Performance): Substitute Performance for any other skill as long as no demonstration is required (you can act tough; that doesn’t make you tough.)
Pointed Performance (Performance): Place specific aspects on a scene during a performance.
Marked by Power [-1]
Wizard’s Constitution [-0]
Sponsored Magic [-4]
The Sight [-1]
Commanding Presence [-2]
Mental 4
Physical 3
Social 4
Lawrence’s powers are Sponsored Magic from Brigid, the Celtic goddess of Poetry, Healing, and Crafting. He is a gifted crafter of potions and magical items, and is also versed in wards. You never know what he might have sitting around “just in case.”
Commanding Presence Treat as a Block of Epic (7) strength against physical action. Lawrence may only use this (sponsored) power while in Accorded Neutral Territory (i.e. the City Lights Bookstore coffee shop.)

Lawrence typically wears a small, gold torc as a necklace. It acts as a holy symbol. He also typically conceals Brigid’s Mark of Power while he’s in the coffee shop.
Total Refresh Cost: -12


Lawrence is the owner of City Lights Books, a landmark independent bookstore and publisher. He is a prolific poet, author, and literary critic; as well as a painter and sometimes-musician. Though most strongly associated with Renaissance and Beat poetry, he rejects all attempts to categorize his work.

Lawrence was born in 1919 in Yonkers, New York. He was orphaned almost immediately, and was taken in by an aunt. She moved him to France for the first part of his life, making French his first language. He returned to the U.S. with his aunt in his early teens, and was taken in by a family for whom she worked as a governess. Upon graduation from high school, he attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His plans to become a writer or journalist were interrupted by the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Lawrence relocated to Chicago and joined the Navy, serving onboard several vessels. When hostilities ended, he stayed in Europe to continue his studies, eventually earning advanced degrees in English Literature. He also took the opportunity to travel, and two of these trips had especial impact on him. The first was a visit to Japan. After touring the cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, Lawrence became a staunch, lifelong pacifist. The second was a visit to Ireland. Lawrence developed a tremendous love for the country, its culture, and its people. He also came to the attention of Brigid, the celtic goddess of inspiration and healing. There is a persistent rumor that Lawrence performed some tremendous service for Brigid, and that she made him her Ollamh, or Ollave, as a reward. Lawrence, however, will neither confirm nor deny this assertion.

Returning to America, Lawrence co-founded City Lights bookstore and publishing company, which he still runs today. The store, and its outspoken owner, became a beacon for many poetry movements of the 1950s. This prominence led to an arrest on obscenity charges in 1956. The ensuing trial became a landmark case in First Amendment Rights, and established a legal precedent for publication of controversial materials that nevertheless had redeeming social value. Though in his nineties, Lawrence is still a vibrant and energetic man, a perk, it is said, of his relationship with Brigid. He continues to be a prominent voice in San Francisco for independent artists of all variety. He can usually be found at his beloved bookstore, wandering the aisles, entertaining customers, or serving exotic drinks in the coffee shop downstairs.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Shadows of The City JohnThompson JohnThompson