Monday May 1st

[Mayday – Eric Drooker

Mayday – always a big day on the Allen Ginsberg Project

For an extended look at Allen – the May Day King  – see here

“And I am the King of May, which is the power of sexual youth,/and I am the King of May, which is industry in eloquence and action in amour,/and I am the King of May, which is long hair of Adam and the Beard of my own body/and I am the King of May which is Kral Majales in the Czechoslovakian tongue..”… Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 237

 

 

                                                     

Herschel Silverman  (1926-2015) – Photo by Jeffrey Weinberg

Herschel Silverman, New Jersey “Beat” legend passed away last Saturday, aged 89, “The Candystore Man”. Allen immortalized him in his poem, “Television Was A Baby Crawling Toward That Death Chamber” – “candystore emperor Hersch Silverman, dreaming of telling the Truth, but his Karma is selling jellybeans & being kind” Here’s a 2000 New York Times article on him Allen on his poems: “There is an inventive energy, New Jersey beauty and charm in his compositions . This writing is marked by soulful perception of life around him and … Read More

Refrain

 

[Eric Drooker – illustration for The Ballad of the Skeletons, as it appeared in The Nation, October 23, 2012]

More Lion For Real amplification.  More early Ginsberg lyrics  – today’s offering – Refrain

To hear his 1989 version, see here Sleeve note:  “Among the earliest writings in this suite, echoing late Yeats style. “Shadow changes into bone,” was my Kerouackian motto, 1948, intending to say that eternal prophetic poetic intuition (shadow) will turn out to be real (bone). Having heard (William) Blakes voice I was headed for the booby-hatch for a season. Michael BlairRead More

The Lion For Real – (Three Renditions)

Another from Michael Minzer and Hal Willner’s The Lion For Real – the title track. The musicians on this one – Arto Lindsay, guitar, Michael Blair, guitar (& glockenspiel), Gary Windo, tenor sax,  Rob Wasserman, bass, Beaver Harris, drums – sound effects by Richard Fussco. Allen’s sleeve note:  [“Soyez muette pour moi, contemplative Idole”] – “Be mute for me, Contemplative idol’, epigram from Tristan Corbiere‘s last stanza, “Rhapsody of a Deaf Man”.[“Rhapsodie du sourd“] –  Retrospective account of a “mystical experience” 1948 described elsewhere (Paris Review Interviews – Writers at Work … Read More

May Day

[May Day – street poster design by Eric Drooker]

May Day. May Day Greetings from The Allen Ginsberg Project! With Allen this day (today) is always a special day. Remembering his pivotal (all-too-brief) tenure (in Prague, in 1965, the “Prague Spring“) as “King of May” (Kral Majales) – and also his old IWW, “Wobbly”, roots – “America I feel sentimental about the Wobblies/ America I used to be a communist when I was a kid and I’m not sorry” – we always take great pleasure in spotlighting this (from Cosmopolitan Greetings – a … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round Up – 48

This week’s Friday Round-Up begins once again in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street. Here’s Eric Drooker‘s on-site slide presentation (and a spirited recital of the Moloch section of Howl). Andy Laties is on saxophone, Eric Blitz is on percussion (“playing a piece of foam-core because the cops shut down his drums”). Filming is by Rebecca Migdal.
For earlier (sunnier! – tho’ no less impassioned) on-site Zuccotti footage we recommend here, Laki Vazakas‘ impressionistic portrait of October 17 2011.
Johnny Depp fans? Johnny’s been doing the rounds (well, doing a little press) for his Hunter S Thompson Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up 45

Eric Drooker‘s Moloch image graces the cover of this week’s New Yorker. With Illuminated Poems and Howl: A Graphic Novel, we’re now familiar with the iconography of the terrain. All of a sudden, it just, apparently, got more urgent. He sent in the design “almost a year ago”, according to his wife, quoted in their local paper, Berkeleyside, “but it was ruled too dark”. Now that darkness is increasingly being acknowledged. Leading off with, once again, a shout-out to the Occupy Wall Street protestors.
We continue to solicit encounters with Allen Ginsberg. Here’s a touching … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 32

The FBI files on the Yippies (released last week), poor xerox and continuing censorship notwithstanding, proved to be singularly under-whelming. That the FBI had Allen’s up-state Cherry Valley farm under surveillance, well, ok, we never knew that before, but it hardly comes as a surprise! – “Allen Ginsberg”, Albany reports (October 1968), “has lived (this) past year approximately five miles east of Cherry Valley, N.Y. on a property known as Old La Salle Academy. Hippie-type individuals (sic) have been observed (the) past year coming and going from Ginsberg property. Approximately four hippies, names unknown, presently live with Ginsberg”.
The anticipated, … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 31

Bob Rosenthal, “poet and writer, long-time secretary for Allen, and Trustee of the Allen Ginsberg Trust”, leads off this Friday’s weekly Round-Up, reading Allen’s remarkable 1965 poem, “Who Be Kind To”. Allen’s own reading of the poem can be accessed here. Harry Fainlight, dedicatee of the poem, can be seen, in sweet confusion, here. The poem itself may be read here (just scroll down, it’s right below another lively Ginsberg text, “Come All Ye Brave Boys”). There was also a classic Wes Wilson poster of the poem published in that same year by San Francisco’s Cranium Press … Read More

Moloch

“Moloch the incomprehensible prison! Moloch the crossbone soulless jailhouse and Congress of sorrows! Moloch whose buildings are judgement! Moloch the vast stone of war! Moloch the stunned governments!” – “Beat poet Allen Ginsberg had seen it all coming to an America enthralled to the idol of consumerism that he called..Moloch (after Moloch, or Molech, the all-consuming Canaanite fire god)” – The visionary litany (of “Howl part II”) continues to make sense, half a century (and more) on.

Here’s Moloch envisioned by Eric Drooker (the reading is of course by James Franco):