Friday’s Weekly Round-Up 166

Chogyam Trungpa would have been 75 years old today Previous Trungpa birthday postings on the Allen Ginsberg Project may be viewed here and here  For a rich wealth of Trungpa materials – see here (Shambhala), here (the Chronicles Project) and here (the Chogyam Trungpa Legacy Project)

not forgetting his pivotal role in establishing “the first fully-accredited Buddhist-inspired university in America” – Naropa A selection from Johanna Demetrakas’ 2011 documentaryCrazy Wisdom – The Life and Times of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche may be viewed here

Here’s, on the occasion of his birthday, footage of Trungpa, from 1975 – Surrendering Your … Read More

Expansive Poetics 32 (Walt Whitman – Crossing Brooklyn Ferry)

[Fulton Ferry Boat (Brooklyn, New York), July 1890 via The Library of Congress, Washington DC]

AG: So the next one chronologically that I want to take up is Hart Crane, whom we have in our book

Hart Crane

[Hart Crane (1899-1932)]

(Incidentally, SS [sic] gave me a good idea. (She) gave me, as a gift, one of these things where she made little stick-out labels and divided the sections into European, American, Greek, German, Russian, Eastern European. That seems to be a good way. I’ll try it out for dividing up the book. I hadn’t thought of that but it sounds … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 31 (WCW & Others)

tape resumes in media res.. class discussion of traditional and modernist metrics AG:…. how many (syllables in the) French alexandrine?

Student: Twelve AG: Twelve. And if you write in eight, eleven, or twelve syllables, pretty soon you develop an automatic body ear for being able to do it. Among moderns, Kenneth Rexroth‘s longer works are done by syllables – you’ll see a long column of poetic lines and they’re all six or seven or eight syllables. A number of poets worked with that. So that was Marianne Moore‘s way. H.D. – Hilda Doolittle was a lesbian and … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 30 (The Spirit of Romance)

AG:  To make a long story short, (Ezra) Pound went to Venice, (and) studied some classical languages and Renaissance, and Provencal poetries, specializing in two areas – one, where the language moved, from Latin to a provincial language, that is to say, where writers made the transition from writing in classical Latin to writing in French Provencal, or troubadour language, or.. what other languages? Italy, that was… Student: It’s Provencal in the south of France, and koine for northern Spain and Italy. AG: What was it called? Student: koine AG: [phonetically] ko-ee-nay Student: K-O-I-N-E  It’s a common language.. AG … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 29 (Longfellow’s Metrics)

Autographs:Authors, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Autograph Manuscript Poem Signed."Thou, too, Sail on, O Ship of State!" One page, 7"...

[“Thou too, Sail on, O ship of State..” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) autographed manuscript]

[“The degredation of life in America” – William Carlos Williams (1883-1963) annotated typescript –  c.Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale, Connecticut ]

Student: Did they [the early American modernists] manage to do it? (find a way of measuring American verse)?

AG: Yes, I think (William Carlos) Williams did. There were a number of people working on this problem at the time who were friends – William Carlos Williams, Ezra Pound, Hilda Doolittle, and Marianne Moore, altogether went to the same school … Read More

William Burroughs – (Commissioner of Sewers)


 Burroughs Centennial celebration continues. Here is Klaus Maeck‘s 1991 documentary – William S Burroughs – Commissioner of Sewers, featuring, in a suitably cut-up form, Jurgen Ploog‘s interview with Burroughs, and footage from a 1986 Burroughs reading (recorded in Berlin, Germany, in May of 1986).  We’ve featured a snippet of this before (on Burroughs’ birthday) but here is the whole thing. JP: I want to ask you William, what made you become a writer? I’m referring  to your remark, in the preface to Queer, where you said that your wife, your wife Joan’s death had … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round Up – 165

[Allen Ginsberg, 1954 – oil on canvas – painting by Robert LaVigne]

Two weeks since the last round-up, so let’s get right to it. lavigne.jpg (39580 bytes)

[Robert LaVigne – Photograph by Myles Aronowitz]

Robert LaVigne – The troubling case of Robert LaVigne and the allegedly stolen paintings.

Newspaper reports last year noted a court case involving LaVigne and his former assistant George Chebanyuk – (“Chebanyuk is alleged to have tried to sell off six works created by LaVigne, including a nude presumably depicting Beat Generation poet Allen Ginsberg”).  A jury deliberated for four hours, on February 4, and returned a Read More

Expansive Poetics – 28 – (Pound & Whitman)

So there’s two poems by Ezra Pound – I haven’t got the dates on them but I’m guessing that they’re around 1917, around World War I or before. “Commission” – First is Pound’s address to his own poems (just as Whitman had addressed his poems to go out into the world – “who touches this book touches a man” [“Camerado, this is no book,/Who touches this touches a man”]  “missing me, stop somewhere, you’ll find me under your feet” [“If  you want me again look for me under your boot-soles”…”Missing me one place search another/I stop somewhere waiting for you”]) … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 27 (Khlebnikov – 2)








[Velimir Khlebnikov (1885-1922)]

AG: Well, it’s the list poem, or litany, or anaphoric return to the margin, which is characteristic of a lot of this kind of composition. The most common form is (in the) Bible – [from Ecclesiastes 12:6-7, King James version] –   “Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern/Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who … Read More

Expansive Poetics 26 – (Khlebnikov’s Menagerie)

File:Vélimir Khlebnikov.jpg


 [Velimir Khlebnikov (1885-1920]


AG: Now, by  (Velimir) Khlebnikov, a poem called “Menagerie” [ “Zverinets“, also translated as “Zoo”], which would be 19.. let’s see, 1909. Russia (St. Petersburg, probably, among a group that were hanging around a coffee-shop called The Stray Dog Cafe, where Khlebnikov and his friends resided. [Allen then  proceeds to read Khlebnikov’s poem “Menagerie” in its entirety] Royal Menagerie, Exeter Change, Strand, London: 1813

“Oh Garden, Zoological Garden! /Where the iron is like a father reminding brothers to be brothers and stopping their bloody grapple/Where the Germans drink their beer and girlies sell their bodies/Where the eagles sit like an eternity … Read More