The Poetry Project


Book Launch for I Could Not Believe It: The 1979 Teenage Diaries of Sean DeLear

“Happy New Year Tony it is now midnight and one second.”

Before becoming the global icon Sean DeLear -- lead singer of the seminal pop-punk band Glue and an influential member of the Silver Lake punk and nightlife scenes -- Sean was Tony Robertson, a Black queer teenager growing up in Simi Valley among an Evangelical Christian family.

Upon Sean's unexpected death from cancer in 2017, his friend Cesar Padilla discovered something remarkable: Sean's teenage diary from that time, a nearly daily record starting on January 1st of the year 1979. In these utterly horny, totally sincere entries, we find Sean's chronicle of days spent listening to Donna Summer, longing for cock, cruising, hustling, shoplifting, and scheming. Now available as a published book from Semiotext(e), co-edited by Michael Bullock and Cesar Padilla, this rare document opens the window to a lovable star in a vast constellation -- someone whose gift for pleasure ("to the max!") intuitively drew together a truly global demimonde of dancers, punks, writers, designers, and accomplices all dreaming at the exuberant edge.

Join Semiotext(e) and The Poetry Project as we celebrate the NYC launch of I Could Not Believe It: the 1979 Teenage Diaries of Sean DeLear. With readings from co-editors Michael Bullock and Cesar Padilla, as well as Xander Aviance, Kyle Carrero Lopez, Anne Hanavan, K8 Hardy, Juliana Huxtable, Kembra Pfahler, and Journey Streams.

We hope you can join us at 7 pm for a pre-event reception!

With thanks to our sponsor, Supergay Spirits.

This in-person event will also be livestreamed via The Poetry Project's YouTube.