Steven Taylor

[Steven Taylor,  Tibet House Benefit rehearsal, February 28, 1995. Photo: Allen Ginsberg]

[Allen Ginsberg photographed by Steven Taylor/ Steven Taylor photographed by Allen Ginsberg, NYC 1995 – courtesy The Estate of Allen Ginsberg]

The dedication to Allen’s Cosmopolitan Geetings volume (1994) reads -“To Steven Taylor”  followed by that echoing line of William Shakespeare – “If music be the food of love, play on” – Steven, most definitely, did and has. It is a major omission that we haven’t focused on him before, here on the Allen Ginsberg Project – (altho’ we have – see for example here, here, hereRead More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 353

[Allen Ginsberg in his kitchen, 1988 – Photograph by Brian Graham]

The Toronto photo show, “Fleeting Moments, Floating Worlds.., that we mentioned last week continues. What we omitted to mention was the accompanying catalog (printed and designed by the legendary Coach House Press). As curator, John Shoesmith writes in the forward – “The accompanying catalog attempts to further the story behind the Ginsberg photographs. It contains the voices of several key individuals who were crucial to the poet’s “second coming” as a photographer, beginning in the mid-1980s; from the person who planted the seed within Ginsberg to … Read More

Pull My Daisy (Collaborative Poem)

AG: And another one of the similar.. well, of a similar theme, just a crazy (crazy).. – the mad song?  you know, just the idea of the madman’s song?, was – “Pull My Daisy”,  (which began as a little lyric that I wrote, “Pull my daisy/tip my cup…”) – “Pull my daisy/tip my cup/Cut my thoughts/for coconuts...” – (Well I heard, at some point, about Christopher Smart, actually) –  “When I think of death/ I get a goofy feeling/Then I catch my breath/Zero is appealing/Appearances are hazy/Smart went crazy/Smart went crazy” – (Christopher Smart, I meant with that – … Read More

Allen Ginsberg and “The Shrouded Stranger”

[Lamont Cranston – The Shadow –  “Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?”]

AG: This isn’t in the the same meter (as Tom O’ Bedlam) but it’s a similar theme – [Allen next proceeds to read, in its entirety, his poem “The Shrouded Stranger“] – So that was somewhat the same theme. And then (Jack) Kerouac, at the same time, was saying, or conceiving.. We were discussing the notion of the shrouded stranger, a ghostly figure, or, you know, a shroud of New York, a shroud of the East River.  So he wrote up… … Read More

WNET (Koch & Ashbery) – John Ashbery

[WNET film transcription – continuing from yesterday – Following Kenneth Koch, at approximately sixteen-and-a-quarter minutes in, a young John Ashbery is seen ]

JA: I met Kenneth (Koch) when I was first a student in Harvard in 1947 and I met Frank (O’Hara) a couple of years later. We all wound up in New York more or less by accident , and got to know other poets here like Barbara Guest, James Schuyler.. But I think our poetry is pretty independent of each other.

One critic has described John Ashbery as today’s (1966) most radically original American … Read More

WNET (Koch and Ashbery) – Kenneth Koch

Another of the WNET poetry films that we’ve been featuring. This weekend – Kenneth Koch and John Ashbery  – Today, the young  Kenneth Koch

KK: There’s an awful lot in my poems that I don’t understand at the time of writing them and if I understand them as I write them it’s usually a bad sign but I don’t think that’s ever happened.

“There are certain constants in my work and one is this interest in juxtaposing one thing against another in such a way that it’ll be dramatic and beautiful and funny and interesting. Incidentally, my work … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 352

Opening this past week, and on through April 27, at the University of Toronto’s Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library  – Fleeting Moments, Floating Words, and the Beat Generation – The Photography of Allen Ginsberg.

 

from Thomas Marks’  interview with the Italian painter  Giorgio Griffa  (in Apollo) – (Griffa’s current one-man show at London’s Camden Arts Centre, currently up, is up until the 8th of April):

“The work of Allen Ginsberg has also provided a touchstone; Ginsberg’s elegy for his mother, ‘Kaddish’, is … Read More

Neal Cassady’s Birthday

[Neal Cassady (1926-1968)] – Photograph by Herb Greene via The Grateful Dead Archive Online]

Neal Cassady‘s birthday today, born February 8, 1926 in Salt Lake City.

In Denver tomorrow, the David Amram Quartet will headline the 9th Annual Neal Cassady Birthday Bash at the Mercury Cafe, featuring music, poetry and reminiscences celebrating the life and the legend of Neal Cassady,

The following day, February 10th, at the Alamo Drafthouse/Sloan’s Lake, there will be a special screening of the film Magic Trip  (2011) detailing Cassady and Ken Kesey’s 1964 adventures (Cassady driving the bus with the Merry Read More

The Wisdom of the Crazy – Tom O’Bedlam

[”From the hag and hungry goblin/that into rags would rend ye/All the sprites that stands by the naked man/In the book of moons, defend ye..”]-  (image from Guillaume-Benjamin Duchenne de Boulogne – Mécanisme de la physionomie humaine) (1862),] 

AG (from 1980):  We’ve been going through these poems of such persons as the Tom o’ Bedlam anonymous lyric, Marlowe, Wyatt, Donne, Marvell, Herbert, Shakespeare, Milton   (and I’ve been recommending everybody to get the rhythm in their bones and learn the stylistics).

And so now I want to… I mentioned that when I was beginning to study … Read More

Burroughs’ Birthday

William Burroughs’ birthday today

Here’s a guest-posting from our good friend and Burroughs aficianado, Oliver Harris

“How does Burroughs manage to stay so young? After all, he’s 104 and has been dead for over 20 years, and yet he still seems to have more life in him than most so-called living writers. Is it because he was always more than a writer? I’m thinking of a remark he made to Paul Carroll in June 1959, the same week that Maurice Girodias asked him for a manuscript of Naked Lunch and so launched his “career”; that he was carrying out “research … Read More