More Skelton – (“Phyllp Sparowe”)

AG: So – has anybody got any..? What other.. Some more..some more (John) Skelton Anne Waldman: There’s a wonderful.. Do you know “Phyllp Sparowe ? AG: What part of it is good? Anne Waldman: The part with the list of the birds, which you could probably… AG: Could you read it? Do you know it well enough to read it? Anne Waldman: Well, I don’t know if I could do it, maybe.. AG: Does anybody knows Skelton well enough to read aloud? Anne Waldman: I can read this part.. This is a poem about a dead bird , … Read More

Allen Ginsberg 1969 University of Arizona Reading

[Allen Ginsberg, New York City, 1966. Photo: UPI]

Allen Ginsberg Reading At the Poetry Center at the University of Arizona, Spring Reading Series, April 30, 1969

A real archival treasure this weekend. From the University of Arizona Poetry Center’s voluminous archives. Not the greatest of audio quality, but worthy enough. This 1969 reading features, among other things, an important and sizeable rendition of a selection (chosen by Allen) of “Kaddish”.

The entire reading has been segmented (allowing for more clearer identification, but, perhaps, obstructing, a little, the flow). It also seems to be partial (since the last … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 257

[Cadets read “Howl”, February 19, 1991, Virginia Military Institute, Lexington, Virginia. Photo Copyright © Gordon Ball, 2006.]

Gordon Ball‘s iconic photograph of cadets at Virginia Military Institute reading copies of Howl has, of course, a back-story. Occasioned by Iain Sinclair‘s review-article, “Retro-Selfies” in a recent London Review of Books and Alan Baragona‘s letters-to-the-editor reply, John May in The Generalist tracks the tale. Quoting Baragona (‘the guy who.. arranged for Ginsberg to visit the Academy”), he writes:

“Iain Sinclair is within his rights to scorn the co-opting of Beat Generation rebelliousness as a way to defang it … Read More

John Skelton & Skeltonics continues

[“With solace and gladness/Much mirth and no madness”]

AG: Well, (John) Skelton is really interesting. (W.H.) Auden got on to Skelton also. I n much of Auden’s writing, there’s a little Skeltonics. I’ve been using Skeltonics for rhymed poems that I write fast on the instant, usually a series of the same rhymes or rhymes repeated, for a series of love poems that I’ve been working on over the last couple of years and two samples are at the end of a book called Mind Breaths, the last book I wrote. There are two love poems which are quasi-Skeltonics, … Read More

John Skelton’s “To Mistress Margaret Hussey”

AG: So how does this sound in Skelton – [“To Mistress Margaret Hussey“] – “Merry Margaret/ As Midsummer flower/Gentle as a falcon..” (well, that’s (page) seventy-six, back to (page) seventy-six). This is his classic poem. This is like the warhorse that is in every anthology, “Merry Margaret..” – on page seventy-six – “To Mistress Margaret Hussey” – [Allen reads the poem in its entirety]

Merry Margaret, As midsummer flower, Gentle as a falcon Or hawk of the tower: With solace and gladness, Much mirth and no madness, All good and no badness; So joyously, So maidenly, So womanly … Read More

Skelton – Masculine & Feminine Rhymes

Anne Waldman: A couple of notes here, if you want, this is in the Collected Skelton

AG: Oh, great. Where did you get it?..

Anne Waldman: In England.

AG: Well, do you have anything specific? Is there something that you particularly wanted to read?

Anne Waldman Well it just says, “Such vernacular..” – it talks about the vernacular energy of his vocabulary..

AG; Uh-huh

Anne Waldman (begins reading) – “.. Such vernacular vigour releases itself in the verse form that bears his name – the “Skeltonic” or the “Skeltoniad”, readily identifiable by its mono-rhyme leashes that extend for twelve to … Read More

Skeltonics & Rap

AG: So then there’s (John) Skelton, another funny guy – for sound. Where is Skelton here? What page have we got Skelton on?

Student: Seventy-Six

AG: Yeah, right after (William Dunbar). Seventy six-seventy seven. There is a form of poetry called Skeltonics. Does anybody know what they are? Can anybody explain Skeltonics here? – I can’t – I’ll have to explain it next time. I’ll look it up. But I hear it anyway, so.. I wanted to read them aloud and see what they sound like. It’s a short line – two, apparently two accents to the line, … Read More

Mind Writing Slogans

Rick and Rosemary Ardinger’s Limberlost Press in Boise, Idaho, in 1994, published an edition, of 800 copies, of Allen’s classic Mind Writing Slogans. There had been, as the dates at the bottom attest, previous gatherings, but this gathering may be regarded as definitive. As Allen writes in the preface there (“Definitions, A Preface”):

Chogyam Trungpa, remarked “Writing is writing the mind”, thus the title. Ground, Path and Fruition are common stages of Tibetan style dharma teaching, often condensed into slogans for mind-training traditioned in Eastern thought. Here, Ground means the situation of mind: we’re all amateurs at reading our own … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 256

[Allen Ginsberg, photographed at Wichita State University in 1966]

Wichita Vortex Sutra“‘s 50th anniversary. Wichita State University Department of History, the Ulrich Museum of Art, and local radio-station KMUW, will be celebrating this Sunday the 50th anniversary of Allen’s first full reading of the poem. There will be a panel featuring Dr Jay Price, WSU Professor of History, retired Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Religion (but active participant at the time), Dr Roger Irwin, and independent curator, James W Johnson. Following the discussion, KMUW commentator Jedd Beaudoin will present a reading of the poem.

Following a chanted mantra,Read More

Wyatt’s Influence

[Portrait of Sir Thomas Wyatt Hans Holbein the Younger (c.1497-1543) Royal Collection, Windsor Castle, England]

AG: So that’s pentameter. So I guess the next thing we ought to try is an exercise in iambic pentameter quatrains Student: Tetrameters? AG: What is? – Tetrameters, right – like four – iambic tetrameter. So we ought to try writing iambic tetrameter – and what kind of rhyme scheme? – What did (William) Dunbar have? Student: AABB AG: AABB – okay, let’s try AABB. So next classroom exercise – iambic tetrameter quatrains – rhyme-scheme AABB,  like “intent/meant/spent” (no, it’s not like that, but … Read More