Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 467

Allen Ginsberg, March 1983. Photo c. Elsa Dorfman

Still mourning the loss of our dear friend, photographer Elsa Dorfman.  From Michael Limnios’ 2012 interview with her:

ML: Would you mind telling me your most vivid memory from your shootings with the nude Allen and Peter?
ED: Oh I knew Allen and Peter so well that seeing them nude was nothing! The first time I did see Allen naked was when he opened his front door for me at his apt. I forget which apartment it was. Wherever he was living in 1959,1960.  And Allen had an impeccable sense of presentation. I learned from him every minute I turned my camera toward him.
ML : And would you like to tell your best memory about Allen?
ED: My best memory of Allen is watching the Democratic convention with him. Estes Kefauver was a contender. I forget who actually won the Democratic convention that year. We were at his father’s home in Paterson… Also when Allen recorded Mexico City Blues by Jack Kerouac late at night after he had arrived in Cambridge from a long trip. My nephew, writer Matthew Power was with us. Allen probably started at midnight.  We finished in the wee hours of the next day. Allen had the most inexhaustible energy.  I would drag myself around behind him. He just went on and on. He worked soooo hard.
Read the rest of this wonderful interview here

More obituary notices/appreciations  here, here and here

Allen Ginsberg & Peter Orlovsky Meditating – Photo by Elsa Dorfman

Allen’s birthday (what would have been his 94th) was this past Wednesday. Here’s lines from Stuart Mitchner‘s timely meditation. “Dancing to the Music of Time on Allen Ginsberg’s Birthday:

“..For the past two weeks I’ve been living in the time zone of the Bards — Bob Dylan, born May 24, Walt Whitman May 31, Allen Ginsberg today, June 3. What better company to keep during the chaos of coronavirus and the president’s rabble-rousing? Ever since he weaponized the word “liberate” and weeks before the flames began spreading from Minneapolis to other cities of the night, I’ve been reading The Fall of America (City Lights 1972), Ginsberg’s “long poem of these States,” which could be a rough draft of the 2020’s ongoing national narrative..”

For the essay in full (written for Town Topics, “Princeton’s Weekly Community Newspaper”) see – here

And celebration of Allen’s 94th and his continuing contemporary relevance – see also hereLaurel Brett – (“Kaddish is the perfect poem for these times”) in the Jewish Daily Forward   

Other Beat news:

Kurt Hemmer and Tom Knoff’s 2002 interview (phone-interview) with Carolyn Cassady, “Let Go and Let God” recently appeared on Vimeo – Check it out here 

Simon Warner‘s revealing profile of erstwhile English Beat poet,  Royston Ellis,  John Lennon’s friend, the man who famously put the “Beat” into “The Beatles”,  is a must-read, (from Jerry Cimino’s always-lively Beat Museum site) – here

Simon Warner

& concluding this week with two previously-unpublished Allen Ginsberg poems – Ginsberg miscellanea –  The first (“”No pyramid/No god..”) from Swedish poet/cultural hero, Bruno Öijer (his Trilogy, (While the Poison Acts, The Lost Word, and The Fog of Everything), was recently translated into English by Victoria Häggblom and the author and is now available from Notre Dame, Indiana’s  Action Books)  

”No pyramid/No god/No Allen Ginsberg/No Bruno K. Öijer/Let’s fight over it/ Phantoms in Boulder!/What’s that supposed to mean?/Merry Christmas! Happy New/year, may you  continue/breathing in your blue/shirt ”  

The second,  an untitled collaboration by Allen and East Village neighbors, Jeffrey Cyphers Wright and Greg Masters – (“The ribbon should have been returned already..”). That poem is included in Collaborations, a lively and still-very-much-up-to-speed historical anthology from NYC’s (Masters’ own) Crony Books.

“The ribbon should have been returned already/like the record needing changing/A baby’s dance with trance-space/A baby’s transparent eyebrow/banked against a stream, flowing in fits/salivating fishes in milk-thick current,/Content reaching for funny planets./ You got news or a new arrangement of colors/ is what unlanguage cries/  over dinner angry wrath from above or somewhere/ nocturnes/ to what’ll make us all cry/ under the bamboo screen unseen as knowledge increases/ not the vitamin shot under the bandage/rather raw like a typeset train ride./ The peculiar wildness of the region must have/impressed the early explorers accustomed to dream-tombs.”

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