Another Ginsberg “tat” (we know how you love these!) to lead off – a “strophe” (or part of a strophe) from “Howl” (did you know that “Howl” was originally called “Strophes”?) – “America I will sell you strophes $2500 apiece $500 down on your old strophe”..”I will continue like Henry Ford my strophes are as individual as his automobiles more so they’re all different sexes”.
Well, okay, so what is it all finally? Let’s see, Urizen is wandering through space, exploring his dens, striding over the cities, creating a cold shadow – “Like a spider’s web, moist, cold, and dim,/Drawing out from his sorrowing soul” – walking over the cities in sorrow – “..a web dark and cold throughout all/The tormented element stretched..”, “(And the web is female in embryo./ None could break the web – no wings of fire,/ So twisted the cords, and so knotted/The meshes, twisted like to the human brain/ And all called it The Net of Religion.” – (compare this … Read More
From “The Book of Urizen” (continues). “Cold he wandered on high, over their cities” – (See) Plate 27B to see Urizen “wandering..over their cities”, maybe. Page 209. In a great night darkness sky, pushing the ball of Reason, that ball of fire, in front of him. In the colored illustrations (page 209 of the Illustrated book), I think that’s Urizen “wandering over the(ir) cities”.. – “In weeping and pain and woe/And wherever he wandered in sorrow/ Upon the aged heavens/ A cold shadow followed behind him/Like a spider’s web, moist, cold and dim,/Drawing out from his sorrowing soul,/The dungeon-like heaven … Read More
Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Beat honcho, head of City Lights, turns 93 today! Happy Birthday, Lawrence! – A miscellany of links: Here‘s Lawrence reading in 2005 for the University of California at Berkeley. Here‘s a reading (in four parts) at DG Wills wonderful bookstore in San Diego from that same year (here, here, here and here). Here‘s Amy Goodman’s interview with him in 2007 for Democracy Now!. Here‘s an interview on Italian television the following year (contrast Lawrence’s Italian with his French (in the interview clip above, recorded many years … Read More
[Allen, recapitulates from previous class]: I think we were somewhere around Chapter VII of (The Book of) Urizen. Orc has been born, the babe Orc, falling from Heaven on page 202 of the Illuminated works (and on page 203, we had Los, now looking more like Urizen, chains growing out of his body, staring down jealously at revolutionary young Orc, Urizen, at this point, is all wakened up, and by the cries – “The dead heard the voice of the child,/And began to wake from sleep,/All things heard the voice of the child,/And began to waken to … Read More
Allen on Blake continues – ( on The Book of Urizen) – “Chapter V – Actually, we’ve been going so slow on this, but I really wanted to get it down so that everybody saw how there was an apparent repetition in here. Apparently, he’s going through it from different angels – one from Los‘ angle, one from (a) Urizonic angle, one from the Eternals angle – “In terrors Los shrunk from his task./ His great hammer fell from hid hand;/ His fires beheld and sickening/ Hid their strong limbs in smoke./ … Read More