1989, Ginsberg and Corso – The Conversation Continues – 14

AG: Then next project is (was) a big book of photographs from Twin Palms Twelve Trees Press

GC: Twelve Trees,  nice name. There was a movie actress long time ago named Helen Twelvetrees

AG: Yeah, yeah So this is a smart young guy named Jack Woody  out in the West Coast, smart like  about the same age maybe, and kinda handsome-looking, a little bit like  Raymond Foye

GC: Ok

AG: Yeah, you know, very very intelligent , very delicate and very bibliographically exquisite.

GC:What is he going to do? He’s going to do a book of your photographs?

AG:A book of one-hundred-and-eight photographs, and it’s two years late. I delivered the photographs but I’ve been delaying, and slowly working on the back of the book, a little prose-poem mini-biography of everybody who’s photographed in the book whose photos  I took, plus little selections from their works, (so everybody gets a taste of your work –   like, it would probably be “The Last Gangster” and the late work, (and)  “The Whole Mess Almost” – unless I see something in this new book

and (Robert) Creeley will be “Still Too Late…”,“Still Too Young”,  and “Sad Advice”  poems

Bill (Burroughs) will be the Interzone Meat Café (scene from Naked Lunch)  probably.

GC: So a book of photographs..

AG:  But it is.. for.. like.. an educational thing for young people who might not know who.. who’s Gregory Corso?  who’s Bill Burroughs? or who is Robert Creeley. They’ll get a little taste of their poetry and a little flash biography . So it’s an educational thing for people  who don’t read books anymore.  And that’s forty years of photographs, from days when you and Kerouac were hanging around with Burroughs in East 7thStreet near Tompkins Square to 206 East 7th, in my old apartment

GC: You just said something that caught me in my head. Do you remember when we were young we read poetry, we read people’s poetry?

AG: Yeah.

GC: Not many people at the time were reading people’s poetry were they?

AG: No

GC: So I don’t see why it should change, you see. And yet it was so important to us wasn’t it? – the poets!  So it’s the same way today, but a select few..

AG: Who were we reading?

G: We were reading in those days. was..Hart Crane, right?  Williams, of course,  (Yeah, you introduced me to Wiliams)

AG: Pound

GC: Pound, yeah

AG: Eliot, I read a lot of Eliot , little bit of Stevens, a lot of Rimbaud, a lot of Blake, a lot of Kafka, I read lot of Melville’s poetry             

GC:  Yeh, but I was saying that it was always their poetry, it was never like…  it’s like it’s closed down, people aren’t reading anymore, They never did read much!

AG:  Yeah, the poets, there’ll always be.. be…

GC: Of course, there’ll always be reading them.

AG: But there’s kids now I see… the kids that hang around Roger Richards rare bookroom all week.

GC: Yes, I know them and they read poetry.

You don’t ever get many people to read poetry, Allen, and yet the Poet’s up there with the Emperors and the Kings and the Popes!  Its always throughout history that way. And they do influence life There is a stamp there, of “unacknowledged  legislators”, so to speak, right?

to be continued

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