More on Metrics – 2

[Allen Ginsberg, San Francisco, 1956 – Photograph by Harry Redl]

Allen Ginsberg continues, lecturing his Naropa students on metrics

AG: “Moloch who’s eyes….. da da-da da, da-da da da , da-da da ,da-da da-da da, da-da.. And if you have a gang of choruses going bop-pa-pa-bom, bop-pa-pa-bom, you’ve got something very powerful going on And so, in.. without knowing it, just intuitively, I was using choriambic and variations of choriambic meters, in the Moloch section of “Howl” – “Moloch-who’s-eyes-are-a-thous-and-blind-wind-ows” – (da-da da da-da da da-da da da-da) – “thousand-blind-windows”, “thousand-blind-wind..” “Moloch-who’s-eyes-are-a-thous-and-blind-wind-ows” – So it’s a combination of choriambic … Read More

More Detour on Metrics – (Longfellow)

 

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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

AG: But (Henry Wadsworth) Longfellow, interestingly enough, (and) (Thomas) Campion, in the sixteenth Century tried out quantitative verse forms just to see if it could be done in English. Then, in the nineteenth-century, a whole raft of poets, in the mid nineteenth-century also tried out these rhythms more with an emphasis on the accentual stress part rather than on the quantitative. So there are great poems by (Algernon) Swinburne, (Alfred Lord) Tennyson (who was a fantastic prosodist, who knew all the different rhythms) – Swinburne, Tennyson, and, in America, … Read More