Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 32

The FBI files on the Yippies (released last week), poor xerox and continuing censorship notwithstanding, proved to be singularly under-whelming. That the FBI had Allen’s up-state Cherry Valley farm under surveillance, well, ok, we never knew that before, but it hardly comes as a surprise! – “Allen Ginsberg”, Albany reports (October 1968), “has lived (this) past year approximately five miles east of Cherry Valley, N.Y. on a property known as Old La Salle Academy. Hippie-type individuals (sic) have been observed (the) past year coming and going from Ginsberg property. Approximately four hippies, names unknown, presently live with Ginsberg”.
The anticipated, wished-for “bust”, the self-incrimination, the self-immolation was, however, not forthcoming – “Check with local police show no disturbances or other complaints re Ginsberg and associates”, the files report – and again: “New York State police have conducted spot checks on persons coming to Ginsberg property re narcotics violations with negative results”.
“All individuals observed”, the field agent dryly remarks “are hippies”.

Hippies? what do you mean by hippies?

Well one set of hippies were certainly the Merry Pranksters. Alex Gibney and Alison Ellwood’s Magic Trip movie (that we commented on when it played earlier in the year at Sundance) is now officially out, or near-enough officially out (“on demand” everywhere, and in theaters August 5″). More about the movie and the trailer can be accessed here. Further sample footage (including tantalizing glimpses of (Jack) Kerouac and Allen) can be seen here.

More film news. Howl is now available on Hulu. Good news for those of you in America but no use for those of you outside of its free streaming (i.e. the rest of the world!) The animator of Howl, by the way, Eric Drooker, was interviewed this past week for the San Francisco Literary Examiner. That interview can be accessed here (2018 up-date -this link is no longer available – but see here )

Howl, the poem – San Diego’s Ted Burke has a retrospective review of it.

Howl minutae – “who sank all night in submarine light of Bickford’s..” Lucy Cohen Blatter traces the history of that New York City building here.

Allen and his influences. Our good friend Don Share, over at Issa’s Untidy Hut, notes (specifically in the poem “Back on Times Square, Dreaming of Times Square”) his (Allen’s) acknowlegement of Basho.

Another poem, New Stanzas for Amazing Grace”, forms the basis of music teacher Eric Edberg’s personal satori“Allen Ginsberg (Indirectly) Solved My New York Dilemma”.

Today (July the 8th) is the 189th anniversary of the great poet Percy Bysshe Shelley’s death – just thought you might like to know!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *