WNET (Koch and Ashbery) – Kenneth Koch

Another of the WNET poetry films that we’ve been featuring. This weekend – Kenneth Koch and John Ashbery  – Today, the young  Kenneth Koch

KK: There’s an awful lot in my poems that I don’t understand at the time of writing them and if I understand them as I write them it’s usually a bad sign but I don’t think that’s ever happened.

“There are certain constants in my work and one is this interest in juxtaposing one thing against another in such a way that it’ll be dramatic and beautiful and funny and interesting. Incidentally, my work … 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

Herrick’s Daffodils

AG: And then there’s a very nice one “To Daffodils”.. in term of the meter count, no, in terms of the syllable count. Dig what he’s got there –

“Fair Daffodils, we weep to see (eight syllables) /You haste away so soon (six syllables)/ As yet the early-rising sun (eight syllables)/Has not attain’d his noon (six syllables)/ Stay, stay, (two syllables)/ Until the hasting day (six syllables)/Has run (two syllables)/ But to the even-song (six syllables) / And, having pray’d together, we (eight syllables)/Will go with you along. (six (syllables)

We have short time to stay, as you, (eight)/ … Read More

Ron Padgett’s Collected Poems

It’s a red-letter day!  (or, to be accurate, a red-and-black letters day, on a plain cream-white background!). Coffee House Press have just published, in one 800-plus single volume, The Collected Poems of Ron Padgett.Ron Padgett‘s poems”, writes Anne Waldman, “are essential and Ron Padgett is a genius”. She goes on,”His poetry is masterful for its panoramic humanity and mind-stopping verbal wit, its breathtaking power and beauty. We want to stay with the person in these poems all day long, to be changed by the possibilities palpitating from the smallest increments of our existence to the most … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round Up – 123

[Allen Ginsberg, San Francisco 1994 – photograph by Chris Felver (from the Berg Collection at the New York Public Library]

Belatedly noting the passing (he died April 11, aged 86) of the noted free-speech lawyer, Edward De Grazia, “one of the country’s foremost advocates of the First Amendment, championing the causes of writers, publishers, film-makers and others who challenged legal and moral conventions” (as his Washington Post’s obituary-note succinctly puts it). De Grazia was the author of the wonderfully-titled, (and wonderfully-comprehensive), Girls Lean Back Everywhere -The Laws of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius (the source of that … Read More