Comprehensive Reading

Edmund Spenser (1552-1599)

AG: Edmund Spenser is a colossus, and he’s so big that I think we’ll go around him Except, maybe, one or two, one or two little short things – the Epithalamion – a big Leviathan poem here, marriage poem. What I would suggest is that you go home and read it. It’s got a great stanza form, it’s got a great rhythmic form. So what we might do (here) is read just the first and last stanzas, just to get the stanzaic form get a taste..  Page 162 – I’m sorry..

Well, he’s very brilliant in, you … Read More

Marlowe & Raleigh (The Passionate Shepherd)

 

Abraham Bloemaert – Shepherd and Shepherdess (1627) oil on canvas – in the collection of Niedersächsisches Landesmuseum, Hannover (Germany)

AG: Does everybody here from high school remember (Christopher) Marlowe and (Walter) Raleigh‘s little complimentary poems, “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” and “The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd“? Has everybody read those? – A few. Well, let’s get on to those.  [Editorial note – Earlier recordings of Allen reading those two poems can be found here] Do you want to read… Let’s start with the Marlowe. Rachel [sic], do you want to read that? … Read More

Rose-Cheek’d Laura’s Centrality

[Ezra Pound, Basil Bunting, Louis Zukofsky, Robert Duncan, Robert Creeley, William Carlos Williams and Marianne Moore]

AG: So you’ll find in the twentieth-century,  (Ezra) Pound, (Basil) Bunting, (Louis) ZukofskyRobert Duncan, some of (Robert) Creeley, all derive from this poem or from the practice of this poem. It’s sort of like the secret inner measure of their work, the kind of attempt that Campion is getting into here or the territory he’s getting into. And that was related to the idea of William Carlos Williams of finding a measure that would be an American … Read More

Bunting & Campion – Follow Thy Sun..

AG: …But anyway, getting back to (Thomas) Campion (and) (Basil) Bunting‘s vocalization of “Follow Thy Sun…. ”  – What page is that (in the (Norton) anthology)? Two-twenty-five again?

[Allen, turning on and off the tape of the Bunting’s lecture recording, searches on the tape-recorder] – “Well, let’s see what he says about it – He was using records too – It’ll be clear in a minute..”

[At approximately thirty-two-and a quarter minutes in (and concluding at approximately thirty-four-and-a-quarter minutes in), Allen plays a recording of Bunting reading Campion’s  “Follow Thy Sun…” – “Follow thy fair sun, unhappy shadow/Tough … Read More

Basil Bunting Reads Campion – 2

Basil Bunting can be heard again on tape, reading from Campion.

WHEN thou must home to shades of underground, And there arrived, a new admirèd guest, The beauteous spirits do engirt thee round, White Iope, blithe Helen, and the rest, To hear the stories of thy finish’d love          From that smooth tongue whose music hell can move; Then wilt thou speak of banqueting delights, Of masques and revels which sweet youth did make, Of tourneys and great challenges of knights, And all these triumphs for thy beauty’s sake:          When thou hast told these… Read More

Basil Bunting continued – (Bunting reads Campion)

Basil Bunting (1900-1985)
Thomas Campion (1567-1620)

A fresh tape Basil Bunting  in media res reading Thomas Campion‘s “Hark, all you ladies that do sleep!”     

HARK, all you ladies that do sleep!   The fairy-queen Proserpina Bids you awake and pity them that weep   You may do in the dark     What the day doth forbid;            Fear not the dogs that bark,     Night will have all hid. But if you let your lovers moan,   The fairy-queen Proserpina Will send abroad her fairies every one,            That shall pinch black and blue     Your white hands and fair arms   That did not kindly… Read More

Campion’s Prosody

Allen Ginsberg’s January 1980 Naropa  class on Basic Poetics continues with transcription of one-on-one conversation that appears to take place after the formal end of the class  

AG: Pat (sic), did you ever read that –  (Thomas) Campion‘s treatises on the music and poetry? Student (Pat (sic)) :  I’ve read the Observations in The Art of English Poesie  AG: Is that the one that takes up quantitative.?  Student (Pat): Yeah AG: Do you have a copy of Campion ?  Could you prepare a little summary of his ideas on quantity…You know what he says about that? [Allen is temporarily distracted … Read More

John Dowland/Basil Bunting

 

John Dowland (1563-1626)

Allen Ginsberg’s January 1980 Basic Poetics class continues (in preparation for future notes on John Dowland) AG; Apparently, I have.. the “Fine Knacks For Ladies“ that you gave me the recording? – I have some  (John) Dowland around and I had that so I’ll try and bring in a… I was going to try and get Charlie (Ross – sic) to bring in a phonograph today. Were there any others on that  beside the “Fine Knacks For Ladies” ?

Student: There’s Dowland’s setting of “Weep No More Sad Fountains” on that other one.

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Dowland Performance (“Weep ye no more, sad fountains”)

Transcription of Allen’s “Basic Poetics” class, from 1980 at Naropa, continues. The previous tape (tape 9 of 35) is missing and this tape comes in (towards the end of a class) with an in-class performance]

AG: What page is the poem  (“Weep You No More Sad Fountains” by John Dowland)
Student:  Page 115

[Editorial note – The author of this poem is, in fact, unknown, but its first recorded use was as the lyric for one of Dowland’s published lute pieces]

[Student/Musician in class plays with guitar accompaniment his own setting of  “Weep You No More…”]

Student/Musician:

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Basil Bunting’s Lectures on Poetic Origins – 4

                                   [Basil Bunting (1900-1985) – Photograph by Derek Smith] 

Allen Ginsberg’s remarks on Basil Bunting’s lectures continues – see here, here and here

AG: So Louis Zukofsky, in modern times,  was the most subtle person working with different measures and with a pure relation between musical forms and quantitative count and he was saying that the madrigal distorts words (because you’ve got several lines at once) and so words are not allowed to take whatever stress is appropriate to them in

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