Ginsberg’s “Woe unto thee Manhattan” (An Early Sonnet)


AG: I think.. I wrote.. When I first read Jack Kerouac’s first book, I wrote a sonnet imitating this, that ended something like.. something very similar with “Woe unto..” (yes, “Sion is…”  “Sion lies waste, and thy Jerusalem,/ O Lord, is fall’n to utter desolation

Woe unto thee, Manhattan, woe to thee,

Woe unto all the cities of the world.

Repent, Chicagos, O repent; ah, me!

Los Angeles, now thou art gone so wild,

I think thou art still mighty, yet shall be,

As the earth shook, and San Francisco fell,

An angel in an agony of … Read More

Fulke Greville & Hart Crane’s Atlantis



AG: – Is [Hart Crane’s] ”Atlantis in here? – where you’ll find something similar [to Fulke Greville] there. The reason I was thinking of that little poem is that it’s got a lot of.. it’s a seminal poem that a lot of people have heard that got a little vibe out of – Crane’s Atlantis, and, if it’s not here, I’ll bring it in some other time …. Nine-forty-three..Hart? what? One-thousand-and-eighty-three – Hart Crane.. I’ll see if I can find a similar piece of rhetoric…No, “Atlantis” isn’t here.. Well, okay I’ll substitute for that another piece of … Read More