Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 383

[Allen Ginsberg at Capel-y-Ffin (“Wales Visitation”), 1967 – Photo: Tom Maschler]

“…rubber booted in soft grass, mind moveless, /breath trembles in white daisies by the roadside, Heaven breath and my own symmetric/ Airs wavering thru antlered green fern drawn in my navel,/ same breath as breathes thru Capel-Y-Ffin..”  (from “Wales Visitation”)

Eco-watch –  They’re thinking of putting a telecommunications mast in one of the most beautiful parts of the Llanthony Valley. Read more about the resistance here 

Allen Ginsberg and William Blake  (sic) – Luke Walker, at Hell’s Printing Press (the blog of the Blake Archive and … Read More

Bob Rosenthal Interview (On Photography) – 2

John Shoesmith’s interview with Bob Rosenthal continues

JS: Would the captions change much then, the more he was captioning? Especially some of the iconic ones which he must have captioned dozens of times.

BR: Sometimes the difference would be the change of an adjective, a tweaking, but sometimes something will come up and it gets longer and longer. They all build on each other. Writing about it is the memory of the sacred. This is what the prints represent. But those silver gelatin prints, they have an eternal etching to them, and the way the eyes look, the communication is … Read More

Brian Graham Interview – part 2

[Allen Ginsberg in his kitchen, New York City, 1988 – photo: Brian Graham]

Brian Graham on Allen Ginsberg’s photography – continues

JS: I’m interested in Allen and his photographic “eye” – did he know what he was looking for when he was looking at a contact sheet and what he’d want printed?

BG: Robert had a lot of influence over Allen (when it came to deciding what photos to print). But Allen took the pictures, so he knew what he was after. And there are a lot of good ones.He had a quirky kind of sensibility. Like the picture of … Read More

Raymond Foye on Allen Ginsberg’s Photography – part 2

Raymond Foye on Allen Ginsberg’s photography – continued from yesterday

JS: Robert Frank was obviously an important influence for Allen.

RF: For most people I knew, Allen was a real hero, but Allen had his own heroes, and Robert was certainly one of them. Allen worshipped Robert. So the photography was a way for him to bond with Robert, and to be his student. He had another friend who was a photographer, who lived above Strand Books (in New York), Hank O”Neal. He was the commercial agent for Berenice Abbott. He was another person whom Allen relied on for … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 375

The Beat Scene – Photographs by Burt Glenn – edited by Tony Nourmand and Michael Shulman (with an essay by Jack Kerouac), a dazzling portfolio of images shot between 1957 and 1960,  both in New York and San Francisco – close up, contemporaneous, and at the heart of the Beat phenomenon – has just recently (just this month) been published by Reel Art Press.

From the publishers’ notice:

“This magnificent volume features a remarkable collection of largely unseen photographs of the Beat Generation by renowned Magnum photographer Burt Glinn. This amazing, untouched treasure trove of images was … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 368

June 3 – this Sunday – is Allen’s birthday. To celebrate the Howl Happening Gallery in New York City has organized once again it’s now-annual event.  This year it features David Amram, Ed Sanders, Hettie Jones, Eileen Myles, Simon Pettet, and Peter Hale (manager of the Ginsberg Estate), amongst others. The event will be hosted and m-c’d   by Ginsberg’s “right hand man“, his long-time secretary, the poet Bob Rosenthal (whose long-awaited memoir, Straight Around Allen, is due out this Fall). There’ll be a film presentation, and an energetic group-reading of “Howl” (“I saw … Read More

Poetry, Society, & Foolish Resentment

[Hokusai -The Fuji reflects in Lake Kawaguchi, seen from the Misaka pass in the Kai province]

Student: Can I go back and ask you a question? We were talking about entering the imagination and making it manifest..

AG: Yeah, well, the reason I read this (Christopher Smart’s “A Song to David”), incidentally, was, obviously , he had to sit down and work on it. And it must have been fun.

Student: For you, what’s left after this manifest  I mean, that’s not totally off-the-wall..

AG: What’s left?

Student: Yeah.  Inside.

AG: Inside? – Inside?  It’s only.. You plumb … Read More

Compositional Practice – (Sustained Attention – 1)

Allen Ginsberg, at Naropa, from 1980, continuing with his lecture on Basic Poetics

AG: So, working last night reminded me of something that I hadn’t tried formulating, or vocalizing, which is that to write a work of genius, of any density and thickness and length (except for the little ditties and brilliant pieces that you can write right off, spontaneously, little short poignant things like that “On Neal’s Ashes”, which are, little poignant poems, which everybody has written of their own), the situation arising where you actually get involved in a work and sit continuously at it for twelve, … Read More

Gregory Corso (K – Libre) – 2

[Gregory Corso, 1957 – Photo: Allen Ginsberg, courtesy Stanford University Libraries]

continued from yesterday.  Gregory Corso begins by reading/explaining his poem, “The Whole Mess…Almost”

“I went to my room/, sat down,/ opened my pen-knife to open a letter./ Halfway I stopped, /put letter and penknife down, went to the window and opened it up -Six floors up – enough to kill a human shot. So, who goes first? – Faith – (you) can’t trust it. You take it, Faith is not Knowledge. It’s something you believe in because you don’t understand it. Out the window with it! Took Truth, and … Read More

Gregory Corso (K – Libre) -1

[Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso, New York City, 1985. Photo: Hank O’Neal]

This weekend we feature just one of the innumerable treasures in the Archives at Stanford University (there’ll be many more to come)

Today (in two parts, the second tomorrow) Allen Ginsberg’s tape from 1977 of a reading by Gregory Corso. (“K-Libre”? Kerouac Library? a benefit of some sort? We’re not exactly sure)

With significant detour and deviation (sic) and against a boisterous audience he (Gregory) organizes the reading along mathematical lines.

The poems he reads are “Verse”, “Alchemical Poem”, “As long as we live…”, “The Whole Mess…Almost”, “The … Read More