Ben Jonson – (The Triumph of Charis)

[Sandro Botticelli (c.1445-1510) – Primavera (Allegory of Spring)  (1482) – (detail) ]

 continuing with Ben Jonson

AG:   Yeah, well I want to get on to “The Triumph of Charis” – Charis? – Charis. Do you know what that is? It’s a play, originally, I imagine, from a play, or  a longer poem but I think a play Do you know anything about that, the origin of that, Stanley? (sic)

Stanley Lombardo : No

AG: Okay, the measure or the rhythm in the ending of this poem is really exquisite and powerful and really interesting maybe to get on … Read More

Ben Jonson – (“Drink To Me Only With Thine Eyes”)

AG:   To (Ben)  Jonson. What I wanted to get onto was page two-sixty, “The Triumph of Charis“.. oh no, before that, we did that, those two little epitaphs, on page two fifty-six, two fifty-seven – and, on the way out, (Ted) Berrigan reminded me of a poem he likes particularly, “On Gut”  – “Gut eats all day and lechers all the night..” – page two fifty-six – patting his belly and preaching on gut – “Gut eats all day and lechers all the night;/So all his meat he tasteth over twice;/Andm striving so to double his … Read More

A Ben Jonson Reading List

[Ben Jonson (1572-1637)]

AG: I guess it’s nine-thirty. So we’ll go on to Ben Jonson next. And I think I gave you what I  suggested from Jonson was..  two.. do you still have that page?.. two-fifty-two –  (the poem) on his first son – “On My First Son” (“Farewell, thou child of my right hand, and joy..”)  – (then) – two fifty-six, Salomon Pavey – “An Epitaph on S.P.” (“Weep with me, all you that read/This little story”) – (and) – Little L.H. – “Epitaph on Elizabeth, L.H.”  (“Wouldst thou hear what man can say..”) – … Read More

Corso (& Whitman)

[Gregory Corso, 1993]

More Beat photo portfolios. Today, March 26, would have been the 87th birthday of the rambunctious Gregory Corso.

[Gregory Corso, New York City, 1953 – Photography by Allen Ginsberg]

[Gregory Corso at the Beat Hotel, Paris, 1958 – Photograph by Harold Chapman]

[Gregory Corso, making a call in the White Horse Tavern, New York City, February 1959 –  Fred W. McDarrah – Photo Courtesy Estate of Fred W, McDarrah]

[Gregory Corso in front of the Parthenon, Athens, 1959. Photograph by James Burke]

[Gregory Corso, Tangier, July 1961. Photograph by Allen Ginsberg]

[Gregory Corso at the Royal Albert … Read More

Instigating the Howl Trial – March 25, 1957

Sixty years ago today, the US Customs, in the person of Collector of Customs, Chester MacPhee, confiscated five-hundred-and-twenty copies of Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl”  – a pivotal moment  

From Bill Morgan‘s  Howl on Trial – The Battle for Free Expression:

“The Collector of Customs, Chester MacPhee, confiscated 520 copies [of Howl ] because, as he said, “The words and the sense of the writing is obscene…you wouldn’t want your children to come across it.”   U.S. Customs Law required a Federal Judge, upon application of the U.S. Attorney,  to grant permission to destroy the books. But, as [City Lights publisher, … Read More

Joanne Kyger (1934-2017)

[Joanne Kyger and her companion Donald Guravich]

It is with great great sadness that we announce today the passing of the immeasurably wonderful and irreplaceable  Joanne Kyger.  She passed away yesterday, Wednesday March 22nd, at 11.11 a.m, at her home in Bolinas,  aged 82, in the year of the Rooster.

Here is John McMurtrie’s obituary in the San Franciscan newspapers

and Rod Meade Sperry in the Buddhist journal, Lion’s Roar.

[Joanne Kyger, hills leading to Himalayan Peaks, studying guidebook on wall in Amora, we were on Pilgrimage to Buddhist sites, here visiting Lama Govinda, March 1962. Photograph by Allen … Read More

John Donne – 15 (Conclusion)

Allen Ginsberg on John Donne concludes

AG: There is a poem of (John) Donne‘s which is not in the book which I would like to lay out. I think it may be his last poem or toward his last poem, his last, death, poem – “A Hymn to God The Father”, which doesn’t seem to be in this book, though it’s one of his best, in terms of puns. There is a late poem on death, at the end here (of your book), “Hymn To God In My Sickness, but I’ll read this other one because … Read More

Two Experiences (John Donne – 14)

[Jindra Noewi – “Lovers In Eternal Kiss” (2008)]

From a March 1980 classroom, Allen Ginsberg and Naropa students discuss John Donne and the experience of love, ecstasy, and hallucinations – continued from yesterday

AG: No, it says that they’re one  [the lovers in John Donne’s “The Ecstasy”]…they become one. Well, maybe everybody’s experience of love is different, but I’ve had the opportunity in the last few days (and other times too) to just lie a long time looking into someone’s eyes, you know, for hours preceeding the actual physical love-making, and there’s a kind of ethereal deliciousness that goes … Read More

“Common Hallucination” – (John Donne – 13)

[August Natterer (Neter) (1868-1933) – “My Eyes At The Time of Revelation”, (1911-13)]

Allen Ginsberg on John Donne continues from yesterday.

Student: Is he (John Donne) known as a mystic poet like (William) Blake?

AG: No, more of an intellectual. Some mystic towards the end but more..more, I guess..religious… divine, divine..

Student: In the footnote number eight (sic),, they use..(they say) that with “The Ecstasy“, the title. it refers to the standing out, and then the….specifically..

AG: Standing out of the body.

Student: ..mysticism. I got the impression in the first part, with all that “see/saw” and in earlier … Read More