[David McReynolds, March 18. 1960 (sic) letter to Allen Ginsberg]
[David McReynolds (1929-2018) with his cat, Shaman – Photograph by Ed Hedemann]
The great pacifist activist David McReynolds died on Friday August 17 (this past Friday), aged 88, following a fall he sustained at his New York City home. We deeply mourn his passing.
His obituary in The Washington Post, by Harrison Smith (“David McReynolds, gay socialist pacifist, who twice ran for president, dies at 88”), can be accessed here. The informative New York Times obituary (by Jacey Fortin) may be found – here (and Ellen Moynihan’s notice in the … Read More
Hershorin: “Although the official repository of the Allen Ginsberg papers is Stanford University, the Ginsberg Family Collection resides in our small archives in Whippany, New Jersey, which holds materials representing Jewish life in the nearby counties of Essex, Morris, Sussex, and Union. Because the Ginsberg family has its roots in Newark, we thought it fitting that the collection should be with us….When the materials arrived at … Read More
AG: Let’s start in the anthology with Sir John Suckling(page three forty-nine), with the poem called “Song”, which my father used to stomp around the house and recite when he was teaching it in high school all the time because it’s a charming poem, and, apparently, it was very popular among the lyric poets of the 1920s as a model example of all-time great top-ten lyric out of English history. And it fitted in with the tuneful cynicism of the ‘twenties, like (the) Floradora Sextette and the Flappers, … Read More
A passionate letter today from 1965 (at the height of the Vietnam War), Allen, in San Francisco, on this day (November 29), writing to his father. The naivety, indeed myopia, on his father’s side exasperated Allen (the simplicity of the goad that he was a “Communist” that the “Commies infiltrated and used guerilla tactics to ravage and despoil and murder countless peaceful S(outh) Vietnamese”, that somehow an evil manipulating Communist China was the true force behind things and that America, far from being an aggressor, was somehow welcomed there as “protector”. “I’m not playing that game”, Allen declares .… Read More
[Allen begins reading from “Sad Dust Glories”] – “When I sit/I see dust motes in my eye/Ponderosa needles trembling/shine green/in blue sky./Wind sound passes thru/ pine tops, distant/windy waves flutter back/oak leaves/and leave thenm still/like my mind/which forgets why the blue jay across the wood’s clearing/squwks, in mid-afternoon.”
MR: Welcome to “I Believe” and Allen Ginsberg. Allen, I suspect that a lot … Read More
Allen Ginsberg in the Archives at Stanford University
Today big news to report, Stanford University have finally completed a monumental task – the audio/video elements that were reformatted from the Ginsberg papers are now available as streaming media through their catalog. We’ll be focusing more on this in the weeks ahead. Meanwhile to access the Ginsberg catalog immediately – see here
(and read Stanford’s announcement of this, indeed, major “cause for celebration” – here)
Today, please be aware, is Hart Crane‘s birthday (born 1899. died off the Gulf of Mexico).
Today is the official release day for The Complete Songs Of Innocence And Experience, Allen’s Blake settings, re-released on CD and Digital by Omnivore Recordings, for the first time, (plus a second disc of rarities and previously unissued songs). For earlier announcements on the Allen Ginsberg Project – see here and here.
Allen Ginsberg and Studs Terkel continuing from here
[At approximately half-way through their conversation, approximately thirty-two minutes in, Allen sings“Gospel Noble Truths” (“Born in this world, you’ve got to suffer..”) making several improvised additions – (“no permanent soul!”, “the dharma chakra”, “Look what you’ve done – 1968” – “Let go, Studs!”)
AG: You looked like you didn’t want to “let go” of “earth heaven and hell” there!.
ST: And as Ned Kelly, the bandit, said, before they hanged him, and they sprang the trap – “That’s life! “. You said, “Die when you die”. I was about to … Read More