AG: So I would say now move on to.. 1956- moving on from 1956 to 1976. I have a series of poems which will require some music also – “Father Death Blues” – if we can get together on the stage –
My father died in 1976 in midsummer and I wrote a series of poems while he was alive because I spent a lot of time with him during the previous..during the winter that he was wasting, He was quite old and not in pain because it was a … Read More
[Rusty 1941 One-Eyed Ford Coupe – Photograph by Jeffery Wells via flickr]
Student: Is the “one-eyed Ford” something you just made up now?
AG: No , the “one-eyed Ford” is a famous American-Indian twentieth-century.. It’s a great line! – It’s one of the great lines in America .. of the, as-yet, unacademicized poetry. The many many versions of the “one-eyed Ford” song (South-West – Oklahoma, actually – I heard it last year… last heard it (with Harry Smith) in Anadarko, Oklahoma) – “My one-eyed Ford”! – It’s a great line!
GS: We live at the three-thousand-foot elevation on the west slope of the Sierra Nevada in the Yuba River Watershed, which is north of Sacramento and eastward into the mountains. It’s all Mediterranean climate, which is to say, summer-dry, five-month to six-month drought, and very hot (although, you know, not as hot as here [Colorado] – I’m surprised, I expected coming over here that … Read More
AG: So for this [Naropa class on Expansive Poetics]. I thought I’d bring in a little bit of material that is extraneous, but is considered precursor. This is from Geza Roheim‘s “Children of the Desert“ (concerning) the Western tribes of Central Australia. So this is the only ancient poem that I’ll introduce.
[Allen begins reading from anthropologist Roheim’s text] –
“The crowd of women that he had seen in the distance arrived and he had intercourse with every one of them. The man who arose from the ceremonial pole went right into the earth and became a … Read More
Student: Did the Aborigine’s have, (as) a Creation Myth, that they originally came from New Guinea, or is New Guinea just a h(e)aven [sic] for hearts and souls ?
AG: Well, this is Northern Australia. There were about, I think I read somewhere, three-thousand different Aboriginal languages spoken. So each tribe had its own dialect, some of them completely different so that one tribe couldn’t understand another. Originally (before Englishmen came to Australia), they lived in the lusher parts of (the country). It wasn’t total desert. But Australia is … Read More
AG:Phil Whalenbegan with some basic poetics, as far as I understand. I looked over his notes. [Allen had been called away and had handed his class over to Philip Whalen & others – He returns here, to continue with the class, July 23, 1976]
[A brief excerpt from the following transcription has already appeared on The Allen Ginsberg Project – see here]
[Original transcriber’s note – “This lecture is recorded at a great distance from the speaker, resulting in some difficulty obtaining a correct transcription”]
AG: Can you hear me? Raise your hand if … Read More
[Andrei Voznesensky and Allen Ginsberg, Adelaide, Australia, March 1972. Photo probably snapped by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, with Allen’s camera. c Allen Ginsberg Estate]
[Allen Ginsberg & Andrei Voznesensky, Mexico City, 1981. photographer unknown]
With Peter Orlovsky’s passing last week, we didn’t get a chance to mention that Andrei Voznesensky passed away just a couple days later, June 1st. Allen considered him the one living genius in Russian poetry. Allen met Voznesensky in Moscow, in April 1965 and the two fast became friends and would do readings together throughout the world as well as collaborate on poems. Their collaborative poem, “Angelic Black … Read More