Allen Ginsberg’s 1980 Naropa class transcript continues
Student; Did you ever do.. have a go [at Echo Poems]?
AG: No, never did one myself but it’d be interesting to do. Should I assign it to class?
Student: You could..
AG: You’re the T.A. (teaching assistant). The assignments.. the class assignments, we have, by the way, I said I’d get to.. was.. are,/ so far,/ .not very profuse, or exact, or neat/, or complete/. You haven’t hammered your stammer/ to make it exact or compact. So, what I would suggest/ would be you be the guest/ of the muse/ and … Read More
Larry Fagin, poet, editor, teacher, long-time leading member of the so-called “New York School” of poetry, died yesterday. He was 79 years old.
An important co-worker with Allen at Naropa (and, coincidentally, upstairs neighbour in his 12th Street tenement in Manhattan), he was, (though not himself a Buddhist), alongside fellow St Marks poet, Anne Waldman, one of the key figures in the initial years of that on-going experiment. Allen himself was quite unequivocal – “I don’t know of a better editor and teacher of poetry and prose than Fagin”, he once declared.
Larry’s early teaching there can … Read More
We continue with our transcript of his 1976 Bay Area Writers reading
RC I thought possibly to read a few of the poems that would’ve come from that time of ..of being in the city…just seeing their titles and…let’s see…”The Bed” [continues searching] – oh well.. this may get so awkward I won’t bother to ….
The Best Minds of My Generation: A Literary History of The Beats As Taught by Allen Ginsberg is just out (this past Tuesday) from Penguin Books in England. Next Friday, Grove Press will publish the American edition. Interesting to compare the covers perhaps – the more sober UK edition, the more brash, more jazzy American? – Either way, it’s another essential Ginsberg book. Reviews are already highly positive:
Publisher’s Weekly – “A gold mine for anyone interested in beat literature . . . Ginsberg reads and thinks like a poet; interested in language and style, he abandons narrative to … Read More
The big news today. Upcoming on the Ginsberg site, we’re working on a number of upgrades and changes. Stay tuned (and bear with us as we iron out all of the issues of transition). Starting next week, we’ll no longer be with blogger, the blog will be accessible, instead, via a newly-vamped and considerably-improved ginsberg.org site. We anticipate a few problems vis a vis access to some of the older posts (the archives), but, don’t worry, we’re on the case with this and we’ll have everything back up, accessible and better-than-ever, before too long.… Read More
The format of the “Teach-In”, derived from ‘Sixties protests against the Vietnam War
AG: And the other thing, simultaneously is a heating up of all the war protest groups – the Alliance To Resist War and Violence [sic], and there’s now a classic “teach-in” going to take place (like in the ‘Sixties – “teach ins”?). There’s another “Teach-in” coming up, from Thursday on, Thursday and Friday, big “teach-in” at C.U. (Colorado University) . Simultaneous with Simon Ortega [sic – Editorial note – confusing him with Daniel Ortega, Allen means Simon Ortiz], (no, just before Simon … Read More
AG: You all know anapestic rhythm? Is there anybody here that doesn’t know rhythms, I guess. Well, we might as well go to the board. We won’t be using this much in the twentieth-century but, just for those who don’t know, this is standard (or was, at one time, standard) simple measured iamb. [ Allen proceeds to write on the blackboard]. What’s an iambic pentameter line? Does anybody remember one?
Student: “Let me not to the marriage of true souls..” [“Let me not to the marriage of true minds]
AG: Well, it’s kind of mixed. It’s “Let me … Read More
[Peter Orlovsky with mama goat (“Shiva”) and her baby, Cherry Valley Farmhouse, Cherry Valley, New York State – Photograph by Gordon Ball – Copyright Gordon Ball]
An “unusual” transcription for this weekend. From the very early days of Naropa (August, 1975), Peter Orlovsky’s Naropa Class – “Poets Who Have Influenced Me”. He concludes, “Well, I’m sorry I wasn’t prepared. Maybe next year I’ll be better prepared”, but it is precisely the spontaneous un-prepared nature of the conversation (and the reading) that’s so interesting. If you’re listening to it on the audio, be prepared for several ponderous silences, rifling … Read More