Allen Ginsberg on Jack Kerouac’s Mexico City Blues continues from here
AG: “Mysterious Red Rivers of the North. -/ Obi Ubang African Montanas/of the Gulchy Peary/ Earth..’ – (Now there’s really a pretty cadenza – “Obi Ubang African Montanas/of the Gulchy Peary/Earth” – Admiral Peary, who discovered the North Pole, was it? Or South Pole? -[Editorial note – Admiral Robert Peary is credited with leading the first expedition to the North Pole (in 1909).] ” …Gulchy Peary/Earth/Lakes of Light – Old Seas -/Mississippi Rivers, Chicago,/ the Great Lines-/ The Small Rivers like Indiana,/ the Big Ones/ Like Amazon/ Joliet flew…”:
What is Joliet? Joliet? Where is Joliet? [Editorial note – Joliet the town is in northeastern Illinois on the Des Plaines River]
Student: (It’s a city)
Peter Orlovsky: ..Mississippi, or something?
AG: In Illinois.
AG: Outside of Chicago.
Student (2): It’s an explorer, right?
AG: Yeah. That’s right, he’s an explorer [Editorial note – Louis Jolliet (1645-1700) was a French-Canadian explorer].
Student (2): Right.
AG: So “Joliet flew” – yeah, flew up the river.
“Alma, the River of Snowy Love/ – Amida, of Brightest/Perfect/ Compassion” – (Amida Buddha, future Buddha – “Alma” – soul, I guess – “Alma” means “soul” in Spanish. And there must be a town called … there is a town called Alma in Mexico? – [Editorial note – There is a town, a ghost-town, Alma in New Mexico, but surely he’s not recalling that]
(So he’s just recollecting geographical names again and then adding little pretty attributes).
“The Tamiyani Trail across/ the Everglades- /A i la r a l a/ l a r a i l a r a- “[Allen repeats the phrase] – (So it’s just pure sound there) – “The Tamiyani Trail across/ the Everglades/A i la r a l a/ l a r a i l a ra” (So he just was getting pure sound there, just for the sound)
“Singing breasts of women/of earth receiving/ Juicy Rivers – red earth” – (It’s like a pastiche – a little geographical pastiche).
Audio for the above can be heard here, beginning at approximately eleven-and-a-quarter minutes in and concluding at thirteen-and-a-quarter minutes i