Allen Ginsberg 1982 Leicester Student Interview

Last week, we featured transcription from a tape in the Stanford University Archives that featured an interview with Jack Kerouac’s childhood friend (and Allen’s friend) jazz aficiando, Seymour Wyse. This week, from the same tape, the conversation is followed by an interview with an earnest young English student (presumably an undergraduate at Leicester University, prior to the reading Allen gave there with Steven Taylor and Peter Orlovsky in the Fall of 1982 – at one point in the transcript, Allen breathlessly itemizes his itinerary)

Interviewer (Student):  Do you make recordings of all your work?

AG:  Not all, but I have … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 366

[Allen Ginsberg in Benares, India, 1963]

Allen Ginsberg in Asia – another early taste of David S Wills’  World Citizen – Allen Ginsberg as Traveller, (due out later this year – his fourth book, and another must-read from Beatdom‘s spirited editor).

Also from Beatdom this year (we mentioned these titles last week), The Buddhist Beat Poetics of Diane di Prima and Lenore Kandel  by Max Orsini, and, Straight Around Allen – On The Business of Being Allen Ginsberg by Bob Rosenthal.

Must-read, certainly, would also be Sudarsan Raghavan‘s piece (first appearing in The Washington PostRead 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

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 364

Allen Ginsberg

[Allen Ginsberg – Photograph by Allan Tannenbaum]

Continuing today in New York, the inaugural St Mark’s Poetry Project Allen Ginsberg Symposium – For more on that (proposed annual event) – see here

On public television this week, (presented by WGBH Boston and distributed by American Public Television) the beginning of a new tv series and multi-platform digital initiative, Poetry In America.  Allen’s poems (“Hymmnn” (from “Kaddish“)  and “Hum Bom!” are featured in the opening program

From the program credits:

“Although we think of a poem as something read from a book, poet Allen Ginsberg knew that poetry’s power … Read More

Barry Farber Interview – 3

[ Allen Ginsberg and Andrei Voznesensky]

The Barry Farber 1976 interview that we featured last week continues. Audio for the interview can be heard here and here 

BF: I’m Barry Farber, Peter Orlovsky is with us –  I think that means “the son of the eagle”

AG: Right…  Russian too.

BF: Allen Ginsberg, Jonathan Robbins, that’s the poetic part of the panel. The journalistic side, who can’t care if it rhymes or has soul just as long as it asks the desired questions, Robert Goodman, a new broadcast journalist and a good one, Bullets Durgin, just said goodbye, … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up -360

[Protest in front of Brazilian Varig Airlines with the Psychedelic Venus Church, San Francisco 1971, demanding the release of The Living Theater then jailed in Brazil.  Photo courtesy Harold Adler]

National Poetry Month in America this month. “April is the cruellest..” and all that. We’re very much of the opinion of noted poet Charles Bernstein.

`Beats and Buddhism. We mentioned David S Wills’ essay, “The Intersection of Buddhism and the Beat Generation”, a few weeks back, here’s another one, Michael Amudsen’s essay in Empty Mirror – “Jack Kerouac – Avatar of American Buddhism”

The Other Minds’ Sound Poetry Read More

Jack Kerouac Writes A Letter To Marlon Brando

Marlon Brando‘s birthday today. We figured we’d feature the classic letter (belatedly discovered)  written, circa 1957, to him by Jack Kerouac – “Dear Marlon, I’m praying you’ll buy On The Road and make a movie of it…”

Nothing sadly came of it. (“Brando is a shit, doesn’t answer letter from (the) greatest writer in America and he’s only a piddling king’s clown of the stage” (JK to AG, November 30. 1957))

[Jack Kerouac photo for Michael Grieg’s  “The Lively Arts in San Francisco”  article in the February 1957 issue of Mademoiselle magazine.]

[Marlon Brando (1924-2004)] – Photograph … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 358

[“Lawrence Ferlinghetti in his office with pooch, Whitman photo, files, coatracks, bookbags, posters, at City Lights up on balcony, B’way and Columbus Avenues, San Francisco, October 1984.”]

Tomorrow is Lawrence Ferlinghettis 99th birthday. There’ll be more about that tomorrow. Meanwhile, for today…

Lawrence Ferlinghetti interviewed by John McMurtrie in the San Francisco Chronicle – don’t miss it!

[Bai Juyi (772 AD – 846 AD)]

Don’t miss too David S Wills of Beatdom and his fascinating research into Allen’s “great China poem” – “Reading Bai Juyi” “The Mystery of Allen Ginsberg’s “Reading Bai Juyi”

“It is the final … Read More

Allen Ginsberg’s Psalm

[“”Ah, but to have seen the Dove of still/Divinity..” – (Allen Ginsberg) – see above – painting by Jack Kerouac]

continuing from yesterday

AG: Okay, I’ll finish this (poem) [“Psalm”], it’s not that much, I’m going to read it through and we’ll have it “And I write shadow changes into bone/To say that still Word, the prophetic image/Beyond our present strength of flesh to bear./ Incarnate in the rain as in the sea./Watches out for us out of our eyes/What sweet dream to be some incorruptible/Divinity, corporeal without a name,/Suffering metamorphosis of flesh/  Holy are the Visions of the … Read More

Miltonic Psalm Notations

[ Portrait of John Milton –  (circa 1803) – by William Blake]

Allen Ginsberg’s 1980 Basic Poetics class (at Naropa) – continuing from here

AG: So, the next experiment I did (was) with Miltonics – Milton. This is my Miltonics. It was pretty sick Miltonics.  Because what it is,  is a total – 1949 -it’s a.. I think I was either coming or..  going to-and-fro from.. Bedlam – New York State Psychiatric Institute, and I was convinced that there was a supernatural consciousness that I had to achieve and I was not achieving it, and that I wouldn’t achieve … Read More