Quentin Crisp

[Allen Ginsberg with writer, raconteur, wit, Quentin Crisp, at the Kiev Restaurant, NYC, 1995]

Seventeen years since the passing of Quentin Crisp, the unforgettable Quentin Crisp. Crisperanto – The Quentin Crisp Archives – are lovingly and comprehensively curated by archivist/curator Phillip Ward.   So much extraordinary material there.  Don’t miss it. Here’s just a little sampling of the man himself, starting with his acting debut in the 1967 short, Captain Busby (based on a surreal poem by Philip O’Connor)

And Bernard Braden’s BFI interview the following year (“the year “ The Naked Civil Servant” was first published and … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round Up – 293

Bob Dylan, The Mann Center, Philadelphia, July 13, 2016. via Bill’s Music Blog

So Bob Dylan won’t be heading over to Sweden to pick up his Nobel Prize for Literature on December the 10th. The Swedish Academy said Wednesday that Dylan told them he “wishes he could receive the prize personally, but other commitments made it unfortunately impossible”. He is still, however, required to give a Nobel lecture some time between now and next June.

Rolling Stone announces it here, The Guardian here, here in the New York Times.

More Dylan news – and a must-read – (in … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 292

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It’s been a monumental week.   Here at the Ginsberg blog now on Ginsberg.org we’re transitioning (as you see) from our old site to our new presence (part of the spruce-up of the entire site). Some work remains, protecting and reconstituting our archives, (not to mention, other aspects of the site), meticulously going through old posts one-by-one, so bear with us.

Meanwhile, like the rest of the world, still reeling, Here’s the ACLU’s statement.

Not enough that a madman is handed keys to the world.   The death, yesterday, aged 82, of poet-troubadour legendary rock star, Leonard Cohen.  R.I.P.

Rolling Read More

Walt Whitman on Falsehood and Democracy

Walt Whitman, writing in 1871, in Democratic Vistas 

“..I say we had best look our times and lands searchingly in the face, like a physician diagnosing some deep disease. Never was there, perhaps, more hollowness at heart than at present, and here in the United States. Genuine belief seems to have left us. The underlying principles of the States are not honestly believ’d in, (for all this hectic glow, and these melodramatic screamings,) nor is humanity itself believ’d in. What penetrating eye does not everywhere see through the mask? The spectacle is appalling. We live in an atmosphere of … Read More

“Trembling Lambs”

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William Blake – title-page of America a Prophecy copy A (printed 1795) – collection of the Morgan Library

 

Allen, writing, prophetically, in 1959:

AG: “Recent history is the record of a vast conspiracy to impose one level of mechanical consciousness on mankind and exterminate all manifestations of that unique part of human sentience, identical in all men, which the individual shares with his Creator. The suppression of contemplative individuality is nearly complete…”

“Because systems of mass communication can communicate only officially acceptable levels of reality, no one can ever know the extent of the secret unconscious life. No one … Read More

Remembering Pasolini

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Our earlier (2013) posting on Pier Paolo Pasolini, due to a technical error, was unfortunately, and unintentionally, deleted. On the occasion of the anniversary (now the 41st year anniversary) of his assassination, we now restore and republish it here. Today marks the date (the 38th year anniversary) [now 41st – sic] of the assassination of Pier Paolo Pasolini. Following the recantation of his confession in 2005 by Pino Pelosi (“Pino the Frog”), the precise details of his homophobic and racist murder still remain unclear. Andreas Pichler’s recent documentary (made as a co-production for French tv, … Read More

Rimbaud’s Birthday

Allen Ginsberg
Arthur Rimbaud‘s birthday
For Rimbaud on the Allen Ginsberg Project – see here and here and here 

A defence of Rimbaud  by Allen Ginsberg

from a letter from Allen Ginsberg to (Professor) Lionel Trilling, September 4, 1945 [sic]:

…That you are unable to understand why I make so much of Rimbaud, dismays me somewhat. Though I should dislike to be over-bumptious about it, with your kind permission, I must witness his defense. I fear that since you have read  Rougemont‘s Partie du Diable you possibly approach Rimbaud viewing him as another eccentric French Satanist

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A 1980 “Teach-In”

 

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