Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 151

[Allen Ginsberg – Bloodsong – (edited by James Grauerolz) – Italian paperback, published by il Saggiatore, 2013]

Continuing from last week, (we can’t seem to leave it alone!) Kill Your Darlings (see earlier digests here and here) continues to garner reviews (mostly positive ones) – Michael O’Sullivan in The Washington Post takes up the debate over the blurring of fiction and fact (in particular, the presentation of Lucien Carr – wait a minute, “the Lucian Carr character”) – “You’d better like it complicated”, he writes, “The film is awash in delicious and difficult ambiguities”. These “delicious and difficult ambiguities” … Read More

Investigative Poetics – 6 (Pound and Paranoia)

File:Museo del Prado - Goya - Caprichos - No. 43 - El sueño de la razon produce monstruos.jpg[Francisco Goya (1746-1828) – El sueño de la razon produce monstruos” (“The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters”) – Plate 43 of  “Los Caprichos” (“The Caprices”), (1799), etching and aquatint on paper 8.4 x 5.9 inches –  in the Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, Spain]

AG: (tape continuing in media res, after brief pause)  …a big paranoiac projection – got that down on tape? – The whole study, finally, leading to the conclusion that it was just a.. big paranoiac projection, and that maybe you’re crazy (or, maybe, they‘re crazy – or maybe you’re all crazy together!  And then

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Investigative Poetics – 5 – (Drugs – 2)

Allen on “Investigative Poetics” continuesAG: Well all this is simply to say that there was some kind of vast and large-scale weird conspiracy to interfere with people’s lives, to interfere with the doctor-patient relationship, to tell niggers (sic) to stop smoking grass, or tell white people to stop (emulating) the niggers smoking grass, for whatever reason. It entered into the poetry because there’s this old tradition of Theophile Gautier and the Club of the Hashashins (Club des Hashisihins), or Arthur Rimbaud and Paul Verlaine, French poets of the 1870’s taking hashish, (Charles) Baudelaire’s writings on hashish, (Samuel Taylor) Coleridge on … Read More

Sunflower Sutra – Mekas Vintage Footage (1959 at the Living Theater)

Yesterday, posted on You Tube was remarkable footage (by Jonas Mekas) of Allen, Amiri Baraka (then LeRoi Jones) Ray Bremser, and Frank O’Hara, famously reading together, in 1959, in New York City, at the Living Theatre, at a benefit for Yugen magazine  (you’re perhaps familiar with  Fred McDarrah’s iconic photo taken on that same occasion (see below) The footage is silent, but Jonas added a soundtrack, a recording he made of Allen the following year, 1960, reading from his classic “Sunflower Sutra” – “ sunflower, O my soul, I loved you then!..”[2014 update – Regrettably, the footage is no longer available … Read More

Investigative Poetics 4 – (Drugs – 1)

AG: Then, later on, I got into writing pop songs. So the fruition of this is “CIA Dope Calypso”  (which will be coming out on Columbia Records this Fall) [1977] – [Allen then plays, in its entirety, his recording of “CIA Dope Calypso” – “In Nineteen Hundred And Forty Nine/China was won by Mao Tse TungChiang Kai-shek‘s army ran away/And they’re waiting there in Thailand today/ Supported by the CIA/ Pushing Junk down Thailand way…”] – Well, actually that’s a product of a collaboration with Ed (Sanders) over a long period of time, a mutual exchange of … Read More

Investigative Poetics – 3

AG: So what I want to do this period is to talk about just what I understand of his (Ed Sanders) notion of “Investigative Poetry”, and the things that we’ve done in common (maybe touching on some things that he’ll go into in more extensive detail. I’ll just give my angle on the same). 

I want to begin with a sample of..  This is something that I did that Ed approved or encouraged, (and) that I, actually, got a little bit out of Ed. It’s a song. Ed started The Fugs, a rock group, which also … Read More

Scraps & Gleanings – A Sunday Miscellany

It’s the Year of the Ginz! – didn’t you know it? – According to France’s Liberation – “Après l’année Kerouac, en 2012, c’est au tour d’Allen Ginsberg d’être honoré comme symbole d’une jeunesse en rébellion contre les mœurs de l’american dream puritain“. (Following the Year of Kerouac in 2012, it is the turn of Allen Ginsberg to be honored as the symbol of youth in revolt against the manners of the puritanical “American Dream””) Liberation notes the extension of Jean Jacques Lebel’s multi-media Ginsberg extravaganza at the Pompidou Center in Metz, through to the beginning of next year.Beat movies – those ubiquitous

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Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 150

[Lucien Carr and Allen Ginsberg at Lucien’s wedding, January 4, 1952]Kill Your Darlings – We mentioned last week the dissenting position, eloquently voiced by Bob Rosenthal in his post from last February – here. – “The film takes its..title too seriously”, he wrote then. “The large fabrications in the film are not so worrisome as the small ones. In any case, when the truth is stepped on and the nuance of truth is denied, the message becomes moribund”. Both Marc Olmsted in Sensitive Skin  and Brian Hassett in Brianland have taken up the cudgels and gone, perhaps, even … Read More