Studs Terkel interviews Allen Ginsberg, 1976 – part two

Allen Ginsberg and Studs Terkel continuing from here

[At approximately half-way through their conversation, approximately thirty-two minutes in, Allen sings “Gospel Noble Truths” (“Born in this world, you’ve got to suffer..”) making several improvised additions –  (“no permanent soul!”,  “the dharma chakra”,  “Look what you’ve done – 1968” – “Let go, Studs!”)

AG: You looked like you didn’t want to “let go” of  “earth heaven and hell” there!.

ST: And as Ned Kelly, the bandit, said, before they hanged him, and they sprang the trap –  “That’s life! “. You said,  “Die when you die”. I was about to … Read More

Studs Terkel Interviews Allen Ginsberg, 1976 – part one

[Studs Terkel (1912-2008)]

We’ve already featured the classic 1959 Studs Terkel  WFMT radio interview with Allen Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky and Gregory Corso in seven sections – here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

We also featured Allen and Philip Glass on Studs Terkel’s show in 1990 – here and here

We’ll be featuring, in the coming weeks, a third, a 1975 session with Allen and William Burroughs

but, first, this weekend, this, (courtesy George Drury and the remarkable trove which is the Studs Terkel Radio Archive) – Allen Ginsberg’s interview … Read More

Allen Ginsberg on David Letterman Show, 1982

Allen’s late-night American tv appearances – We’ve already featured a previous one (from May 10, 1994 on the Conan O’Brien tv show) –  here’s another appearance, the previous decade, (from “Late Night With David Letterman” – this program was broadcast on June 10, 1982, on NBC)

Memorable is Letterman’s shocking confession that he hadn’t actually read On The Road !  Also, we vividly recall Allen taking up sixty valuable seconds of network time, with a discomforting (for Letterman and for NBC) on-air meditation  (Letterman getting increasingly antsy) – it seems that segment is missing from this version. Perhaps someone … Read More

Allen Ginsberg in Austin – Interview – 1978

Interviewer: So we want to figure out what’s best, you know, what will be most comfortable for you. What I want to do is an oral history of the ‘Sixties and Austin’s an interesting area because there’s a major university with a lot of anti-war… There was a segregtion case, a very famous law case here in 1959. There’s been an awful lot of work with the valley farm workers and Chicanos, plus we”ve got the Rothschilds here [sic], we’ve got all of LBJ‘s legacy. Basically, Austin’s sort of conservative but with the university and the State Capitol here, … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics- 129 (Blyth and Haiku)

 AG: I got some complaints that last time (that) I was  getting up in the air, reading too much and boring people, (which is probably true, because my attention wavered occasionally when I was reading through the Wordsworth – most of the time I was there and present, but my attention waved too, as your attention must have –  partly out of desperation, because, actually, (with Wordsworth) I’ve sort of run out of things to teach! – except the things that I knew already, like “Tintern Abbey”, or “Intimations of Immortality..”  I would, if I had it, read through … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics 128 – (Morning Meditation – 2)

[Buddhist Practitioners (students of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche) – Shambhala Training – Land O’ Lakes Seminary, 1976, Land O’Lakes,]

AG: How many here sit?  (How many) have sat? And how many have not? Raise your hands. Of those that raised their hands, how many have not gone to get instruction in sitting? Do you know? I guess you may or may not know about that, but part of the Naropa services includes free sitting instruction, which you can get by going up to the Naropa office at 1441 Broadway, and they’ll assign a meditation instructor to you, who will show you
Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 127 (Morning Meditation – 1)

[Philip Whalen in ceremonial Zen garb at the Hartford Street Zen Center, San Francisco, circa 1991]

Allen Ginsberg’s Spontaneous Poetics/Improvised Poetics class continues,  August 6 1976.

[Original transcriber’s note – “As in all tapes from this summer, this is recorded by a not-very-attentive teacher’s assistant somewhere in the middle of the lecture hall. The windows are open, it’s summer, the students are restless and the dialogue between Ginsberg and (Philip) Whalen is often (regrettably) lost in the mix”]

[Whalen arrives in the classroom, partially attired in ceremonial robes]

AG: (Oh! the) glory! Philip Whalen:  This is only part

Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 64 (William Carlos Williams 8)

[William Carlos Williams (1883-1963)]

Ginsberg on Williams continues:

AG: There’s lots of short poems (of Williams) that might be looked at. What does he do (for example) when he gets into a violent scene, where all perceptions are jarred? [Allen proceeds to read William Carlos Williams’ poem, “The Last Turn” – “Then see it! in distressing / detail – from behind a red light/at 53rd and 8th/ of a November evening, the jazz/ of the cross lights echoing the/crazy weave of the breaking mind:/ splash of half purple, half/ naked woman’s body whose jeweled/ guts the cars drag up

Read More