New Years Eve

New Years Greetings,  2018 – from The Allen Ginsberg Project.  You may remember back in November of 2016, we announced a substantial overhaul (from our previous “blogger” platform) and asked you to bear with us while we made the transition. Well, we have here a pretty big archive, (believe it or not, right now, over two-and-a-half thousand posts!), and so it’s taken us, understandably, a little longer than we anticipated to “catch up” and “clean up” – but we’re working on it!  We also, in those old days, put out the call for more reader feed-back. Please use our Comments … Read More

Allen Ginsberg 1985 Naropa reading

[Allen Ginsberg in 1985]

Continuing from yesterday’s Eric Mottram-Philip Whalen reading

Allen Ginsberg  (following some brief announcements of upcoming readings by Anne Waldman)

Anne Waldman introduces Allen Ginsberg:;

AW: Allen Ginsberg – Guggenheim Fellow and member of the American Institute of Arts and Letters, the author of Howl, Kaddish, Planet News, The Fall of America, Mind Breaths, Plutonian Ode, Poems 1977-1980. His Collected Poems was published in January 1985 by Harper and Row. He has recently returned from China where he has been lecturing at the invitation of the Chinese Writers Union. He’s sung with Bob Dylan and The Clash,Read More

Eric Mottram and Philip Whalen 1985 Naropa Reading

 

[Eric Mottram]

A vintage Naropa reading from July 21 1985 in two parts for this weekend.

Today, the first part, features Eric Mottram and Philip Whalen. Anne Waldman gives the introductions.

Allen Ginsberg tomorrow.

AW: We’re pleased to have Eric Mottram, Philip Whalen and Allen Ginsberg reading – and Eric and Philip will be reading first and then we’ll have a short break and Allen will complete the evening

I have a couple of announcements to make. Please no smoking in this room and no flash photographs and also I’d like to announce there’ll be copies of this … Read More

Eric Mottram (1924-1995)

 

Our focus today – Eric Mottram, (1924-1995), author of  (among many other titles)  the brief survey, Allen Ginsberg in the Sixties – a poet, critic and scholar, a central figure in the English/transatlantic connection, one of the earliest, most astute and most passionate, readers and observers and commentators on Allen’s work.

Mottram on Ginsberg, from a lecture, given  at Kings College London, circa 1970

“He [Allen]’s very conscious now of finding strategies for being very very private in public.”

He goes on:

“But if you are going to say, “okay, private life is primary, the body is primary, … Read More

Richard Lovelace

[Richard Lovelace (1617-1657)]

AG: Now we’ll find out about him..let’s see, Lovelace’s history. He was a friend of… Dick Lovelace was a friend of Jack Suckling, as you remember. Lets see now.. what is this?,.. born in Woolwich, 1618, died in Gunpowder Alley, near Shoe Lane, London, April 1658.. he was an improvisateur. “a more slovenly poet than Lovelace it would be difficult to find” (according to this editor from the nineteenth-century).

Well, here is the situation – (he has several poems about prison, which we’ll get to)

“Imprisonment from which he was suffering was brought on him

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Abraham Cowley – (“The Wish”)

 
[Abraham Cowley (1618-1667)]
AG:  Now, next we get to (Abraham)  Cowley , below, (page) three-sixty,  And the reason Cowley gets interesting is , finally, for the first time, the horrific City. enters in (as it will get increasingly, prophetically, apparent entering into the poetry.. (William) Blake will, pretty soon, (be) talking about.the opening (of the) streets of London and the “satanic mills”, and it’ll go on to the twentieth-century with “Moloch whose cities are…”  ” filled up with plutonian factories drizzling in the toilet!”) –  So here in “The Wish”, the vision the horror in the city,
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Richard Crashaw – 3 (“To His (Supposed) Mistress”)

[“glist’ring shoe-ty..” ?  – Dorothy’s “ruby slippers” from The Wizard of Oz]
Allen Ginsberg on Richard Crashaw continuing from here
 
AG: Then he (Crashaw) also has another poem that has a very pretty triplet thing,It’s rare in English to find three lines (one short, one longer, and then one longest, with the same rhyme -“be/she/me”, “lie/eye/destiny”, “birth/ forth/earth”)
 
So I’ll just read two or three stanzas of it because I don’t want to hang on to it too long (because you don’t have the text) – “Wishes To His (Supposed) Mistress
 
Who e’er she be/That
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The Night Before Christmas

Suitably seasonal – Bob Dylan reads “A Visit From St. Nicholas”  (“The Night Before Christmas”), a poem first published, anonymously, in 1823, and later attributed to Clement Clarke Moore, who claimed authorship in 1837. (Some commentators now believe that the poem was actually  written by one Henry Livingston Jr.).

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro’ the house. Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse…”

[from Mad magazine’s (Jan 1960 parody – New Mad “Hip” Version -“‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the pad/Not a hipster was stirring not even old Dad..”… Read More

Kerouac’s Christmas

Jack Kerouac‘s Christmas memories. The following is an excerpt from a piece he wrote, in December 1961, for Glamour magazine, a prose sketch entitled “Home at Christmas”. Snow-bound Pawtucketville days, the Lowell of his childhood. The piece subsequently appeared in Good Blonde & Others, a posthumous collection, a miscellany of his writing, put out by Don Allen’s Grey Fox Press in 1993.

It also appeared, alongside this piece here, as part of a limited edition, Jack Kerouac – Two Christmas Stories, published by Red Car Press in Coventy, England, that same year.

(it had also appeared in 1973, … Read More