Allen Ginsberg poems in the new Bob Dylan DVD package (we mentioned this last week) – “Rolling Thunder Stones” – Nine poems from the troupe’s newsletter –
Interviewer (David Luhrssen): You’ve become one of the great gatekeepers of Ginsberg’s work and legacy. Can you describe how that happened? You must have really hit it off with him and with the people responsible for his archives!
MS: I think the key was trust. My first interview with Ginsberg was in Milwaukee. He was reading at UWM (University Wisconsin, Madison), and I interviewed him before the appearance. I’d written a biographical piece about him for the (Shepherd) Express and he’d seen that, plus he was happy that I was interviewing him about his music for a magazine (He didn’t get to talk about his music that often.) That interview came out well, and things kind of built from there….
Interviewer: You apparently didn’t include every transcription and journal entry relevant to The Fall of America. How did you decide what to omit?
MS: Some of the decisions came easily; others did not. I tried to include the first drafts of all the historically important poems. Some of the work was repetitious, so I included the best. Sometimes his handwriting was so sloppy that it couldn’t be read by myself or those that I consulted. I knew, going in, that space limitations were going to make for some tough decisions, so I just muddled on through the best I could. So far, the response has been overwhelmingly positive, and I’m very happy about that.
Read the full interview – here
and another piece of inspired local reporting – Elizabeth Karpen on Jack Kerouac in the Columbia (Columbia University) Spectator:
“..I felt the need to read On the Road more than ever at some point during this pandemic. I needed to witness travel, interaction, and change. I slowly began understanding Kerouac’s desire to travel because he could not mature at home….Though I have never felt close to ..Kerouac, I have recently found myself embodying some false sense of him, as if his yearnings were my own…I will never love (him) just as I’m sure he would never love me. My life can be defined by trips spanning only one borough of New York, unlike his chauvinistic romps across the country. And yet, I feel nostalgic for his antique Americana that never existed because maybe, just maybe, it’ll teach me how to grow up…”
On the death of Phil Spector (this past weekend) – Our good friend Pat Thomas reminds us: “When (Bob) Dylan & Allen Ginsberg stopped by to sing on Phil Spector’s production of Leonard Cohen’s Death of a Ladies’ Man LP – Dylan pulled Phil aside and said “You should work with Ginsberg – he’s got words!” – One bullet dodged!
Incidentally, talking’ of Ginsberg and Spector – check out this
Today is a stellar day in the birthday-poetry world – the birthday of three great English poets, Lord Byron, John Donne and – Sir Walter Raleigh – “..Tell potentates, they live /Acting by others action;/Not loved unless they give,/Not strong but by a faction..” – Onward with hope.