Spontaneous Poetics – 37 (Reading List 8) – (Robert Duncan, Andrew Marvell)

AG:  (Regarding Robert Duncan) – “A Poem Beginning with A Line by Pindar” (in) and (indeed, the whole book) “The Opening of the Field” is quite beautiful. His comments on Walt Whitman in that are very tearful [“It is across great scars of wrong/ I reach towards the song of kindred men/ and strike again the naked string/ old Whitman sang from..”] There’s also a very beautiful passage about Whitman in Hart Crane’s “The Bridge” too [“Yes Walt,/ Afoot again, and onward without halt-/ Not soon, not suddenly -, no never to let go/ My hand/ in yours,/ Walt

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Naropa – Chuck Lief Inauguration

Today’s an auspicious day at Naropa (University). Charles G Lief, (“Chuck”) Lief, whose tenure as president began in August 2012, gets officially sworn in as the 6th (we think it is) President..

Here’s how the news of Lief’s appointment was announced last May in the press – Brittany Anas in The Denver Post and The Daily Camera – Here’s the Naropa press-release.… Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 113

From last weekend’s Round-Up: 

Beat Memories – the show of Allen’s photographs currently up in New York, at the New York University’s Grey Gallery (until April 6), has inspired some intelligent response. Here’s Roslyn Bernstein in Guernica. Here’s Seth Rogovoy in the Jewish Daily Forward. Here’s Alana Shilling in The Brooklyn Rail. Here’s Arielle Budick in The Financial Times. Here’s Martin Chilton in the Daily Telegraph. Here’s Mariano Andrade’s AFP report. Here’s the Huffington Post (with a slide-show!) – and Flavorwire with even more of a side-show!)

The show continues to gather international responses – hereRead More

Valentine’s Day Post – Love Forgiven

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY! 4470d2ee3a1fd5e96cbf96d31f9473b0 LOVE FORGIVEN              Straight and slender              Youthful tender Love shows the way              And never says nay              Light and gentle-              Hearted mental Tones sing & play              Guitar in bright day              Voicing always              Melodies, please     Sing sad, & say              Whatever you may’               Righteous honest               Heart’s forgiveness      Drives woes away,               Gives Love to cold clay ( Allen Ginsberg – Tubingen, December 16, 1979)  Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 36 (Reading-List 7) – (John Dryden)

Student: Allen, can you speak up, please?

AG: Yes. (John) Dryden. “In Memory of Mr. Oldham” [“To The Memory of Mr. Oldham“] by John Dryden, is just one single poem that gives you his quality. There is a long poem, the name of which, I’ve forgotten, which ends “Thy hand, great Anarch! lets the curtain fall/ And universal darkness buries All”. [Allen is confused here, this is actually the concluding couplet of Alexander Pope‘s “The Dunciad”] Do you know what that is?
Student: “To St.Cecilia” [“A Song For St. Cecilia’s Day”]
AG: Is … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 35 (Reading List 6) (Frank O’Hara, Hart Crane, John Milton)

AG: Frank O’Hara. Lunch Poems is an easy way to get into O’Hara. Put out by City Lights. Anne Waldman: Selected Poems would be the best buy tho’ AG: Yeah Anne Waldman: And there are some (of them) in it. AG: Are (the) Lunch Poems in there? – Yeah? – Okay, then the Selected Poems. There’s a giant book (Collected Poems) and then there’s a selection of the giant book – and of those..”Khrushchev Is Coming To New York” [the actual title is “Poem (Khrushchev is Coming On The Right Day)“]- well, a lot … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 34 (Reading List 5) (Vachel Lindsay, John Ashbery, Guillaume Apollinaire)

Vachel Lindsay, only nineteen people (in this class) have read. He wrote a poem called “The Congo”. How many here know “The Congo”? How many don’t know of “The Congo”, have never heard of “The Congo”? We don’t have it here, but, basically, it’s a powerful rhythmic thing that everybody would enjoy. They used to teach it in grammar school, but… [Allen quotes from the poem to show why, unsurprisingly, it’s fallen out of fashion] – “Fat black bucks in a wine-barrel room/Barrel-house kinds, with feet unstable..” (continues down to) “Listen to the yell of Leopold’s ghost burning … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 33 (Reading List 4) (Antonin Artaud, Ted Berrigan, Philip Whalen)

Allen’s 1976 annotated reading-list continues with comments on Antonin Artaud, Ted Berrigan and Philip Whalen. 

AG: Antonin Artaud. The text I like best is “To Be Done With the Judgement of God” – Pour en finir avec le jugement de dieu – in which he describes his experience in a bug-house, and how he died on the (electric) shock table. (It) contains among the first mantric, pure sound syllables to be screamed as part of recitation. In other words, he finally gets to a speech that transcends any common sense and gets into pure sounds. “Da kiss ka … Read More

Allen Meets The Beatles/ The Beatles Meet Allen

It’s that Ginsberg mis-spelling thing again! (see here) – but, as with Trent Harris’ Allen interview clip, this brief clip on You Tube of (Barry) Miles “telling the tale” of the infamous 39th-birthday encounter seemed/seems eminently worth re-posting, notwithstanding.

(We’ve actually featured it (the story) on an earlier occasion here).

Miles: “When he was staying with me, he had his 39th birthday and he wanted to have The Beatles come to his birthday-party, so, I knew the address of NEMS [Brian Epstein‘s Company], that was about all, but some friends of Allen’s drew some very beautiful … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 112

Today, February 8, is Neal Cassady‘s birthday. He would have been 87 today. See our illustrated and highly-annotated last-year’s post. 
In a move that would no doubt have bemused Cassady, Denver Mayor, Mayor Michael Hancock made official proclamation of (a) “Neal Cassady Day”, and, last week, in honor of it, and of Neal, Denver Beat historian Mark Bliesner, hosted, (at the Mercury Cafe down on California Street), the (now 4th) annual “Neal Cassady Birthday Bash”.

More mayoral intervention. The late Mayor of New York, Ed Koch, was, it seems, a big Allen Ginsberg fan. Here’s an interesting document, … Read More