Ginsberg’s “Woe unto thee Manhattan” (An Early Sonnet)

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AG: I think.. I wrote.. When I first read Jack Kerouac’s first book, I wrote a sonnet imitating this, that ended something like.. something very similar with “Woe unto..” (yes, “Sion is…”  “Sion lies waste, and thy Jerusalem,/ O Lord, is fall’n to utter desolation

Woe unto thee, Manhattan, woe to thee,

Woe unto all the cities of the world.

Repent, Chicagos, O repent; ah, me!

Los Angeles, now thou art gone so wild,

I think thou art still mighty, yet shall be,

As the earth shook, and San Francisco fell,

An angel in an agony of … Read More

Fulke Greville & Hart Crane’s Atlantis

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AG: – Is [Hart Crane’s] ”Atlantis in here? – where you’ll find something similar [to Fulke Greville] there. The reason I was thinking of that little poem is that it’s got a lot of.. it’s a seminal poem that a lot of people have heard that got a little vibe out of – Crane’s Atlantis, and, if it’s not here, I’ll bring it in some other time …. Nine-forty-three..Hart? what? One-thousand-and-eighty-three – Hart Crane.. I’ll see if I can find a similar piece of rhetoric…No, “Atlantis” isn’t here.. Well, okay I’ll substitute for that another piece of … Read More

Ginsberg on Late Auden

 

W.H.Auden (1907-1973)

  [Allen (at Naropa in 1980) continues his survey through a xeroxed classroom anthology of the Sapphic form, paying particular attention today to the late work of W.H.Auden] AG: So from that (from Robert Bridges),  we get into, I think you have the Vernon Watkins and the.. Student: Auden AG: There’s Auden (W.H.Auden), and then from the front, mixed up in the front there’s Vernon Watkins and Louis MacNeice .. had rough Sapphics – (it’s way up front, we don’t need it now). Auden, however, is.. funny. So I think I’ll take two brief Auden Sapphics … Read More

Allen Ginsberg on Jack Kerouac – 1982 Naropa continues

[Jack Kerouac (1922-1969) at a “Beat”party, 1959 – Photograph by Burt Glinn./Magnum Photos]

 Continuing here from yesterday’s posting – Allen annotates Jack Kerouac’s “Belief & Technique for Modern Prose”     “2. Submissive to everything, open, listening” – so that’s an attitude of mind of..  submissive to any thought that comes along – about fucking your mother, or about…I don’t know, anything it is that is most.. common, and most forbidden, anything that comes along  in your mind that is.. fucking God, if you want to, anything that you wouldn’t want, necessarily, anybody to hear, but you hear yourself, and so, … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 229

[Spiderman and Allen Ginsberg cartoon – Tom Gauld]

 

From the current issue of Poetry magazine  – more Howl parodies – (we’ve featured several such before –  –  Amy Newman – “I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by wedding 
planners, dieting, in shapewear,/ dragging themselves in cute outfits through the freezer section for the semifreddo bender/blessed innovative cloister girl pin-ups burning to know the rabbi of electricity in poverty, obedience, in the dream stick of opium and the green Wi-Fi fuse..” From the Paris Review – “Supplication to the Muses on A Trying Day” – quite … Read More

Jack Kerouac and Hart Crane’s Proclamations

     
 [Hart Crane  (1899-1932) standing in fromt of The Brooklyn Bridge]

AG: So it’s one assertion, or one, say, magisterial mind –  The (very) last chorus [Chorus 242] of Mexico City Blues. Now, recapping from (Jack) Kerouac‘s magisterial point-of-view – instructions for creating a liberated society – (what was the phrase used by (Chogyam) Trungpa last night (sic)?, the name of Naropa?) – the creation of an enlightened society): “The sound in your mind/is the first sound/that you could sing/ If you were singing/at a cash register/with nothingon yr mind – / But when … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 122 (Greek Meters and An Angry Question)

AG: Vachel Lindsay’s “The Congo” – it used to be in all the high-school anthologies in the (19)30’s and (19)40’s,  the Louis Untermeyer anthology, and it might actually have been pushed out by Black Power, by the Black Renaissance movement when they objected to it as being a rip-off, basically, of their rhythms, a rip of their rhythms, although the rhythms are Greek rhythms – da-da-da da-da da-da-da are Ionic rhythms, I believe, are called Ionic – four syllable rhythms –  da-da-da da-da da-da-da  – three, or four, syllable rhythms- da-da-da-da – da-da-da-da, da-da-da-da- da-da-da-da is the famous Ionic… … Read More

Expansive Poetry – 60 – (A Quick Review)

[Hart Crane (1899-1932) in 1930 in New York City – Photograph by Walker Evans}] ]
AG (looking back on “Expansive Poetics”, so far): We had started with a few early precursors. I started, (since this was an international shot  – or, at least, a Western shot), I started with a couple of poems of (Alexander) Pushkin, which were prophetic, about the poet putting burning coals on his tongue, or the poet meeting a seraphin the middle of the desert who pressed burning coals into his heart. And (then) we had, for expansive rhythm, an early nineteenth-century sample of high
Read More

Expansive Poetics 42 – (Edward Carpenter 4)

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[Edward Carpenter (1844-1929) – Photograph by Fred Holland Day]

AG: The other poem of (Edward) Carpenter‘s we might as well do, while we’re on Carpenter, is “The Secret of Time and Satan”. The reason I brought him up is he’s one of the children of (Walt) Whitman and one of the people who applied Whitman’s method of realistic all-inclusiveness, notation in present time, empathy in space, empathy and sympathy going out in space to make notions in present time. (It’s) a more philosophical poem based on theosophical ideas. It has Whitman’s basic impetus and … Read More

Expansive Poetics – 35 – (Hart Crane 3 & Poe)

Edgar Allan Poe AG: And then there’s another funny passage right after that from (the section of “The Bridge”called) “The Tunnel” where (Hart) Crane also picks up on the image of Edgar Allan Poe, whom we’ve already dealt with a little bit. Weird Poe – Poe of the weir, or weird. And he sees a vision of Poe in the subway. Poe, as you know, at the end, his last day – or you may know – was dragged from place to place, voting, from voting-place to voting-place. He’d drunk a little, and was found in the gutter, and was, like, … Read More