David Amram Remembers Jack Kerouac

[David Amram and Allen Ginsberg with Jack Kerouac and Larry Rivers at a diner –  during the making of Pull My Daisy, 1959 – Photograph by John Cohen]

Continuing our celebration of his 87th birthday

David Amram Remembers Jack Kerouac

This initial piece was originally written in 1969 for Evergreen Review, and published early in 1970 at the request of publisher Barney Rosset as an obituary for Kerouac

I used  to see Jack often at the old Five Spot in the beginning of 1957, when I was working there. I knew he was a writer, and all musicians knew … Read More

New Years Eve (Looking Back on 2013 & Forward to 2014)

[“Buddhist (and one non-Buddhist) Action Figures” Photograph by Reverend Danny Fisher 2013]

Last posting of 2013, we thought we’d list a few of our “greatest hits” from the past year – January – Nanao Sakaki and Allen Ginsberg singing “Birdbrain” in Osaka, Japan, February – William Burroughs’ 99th (next year will be Burroughs centennial), March – (speaking of nonagenarians) Ferlinghetti was 94, April – the Beats and the rock muse – “Text and Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll, May – our Bob Dylan birthday posting, (this year – “The Night Bob Came Around” (and the night… Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 151

Continuing from last week, (we can’t seem to leave it alone!) Kill Your Darlings (see earlier digests here and here) continues to garner reviews (mostly positive ones) – Michael O’Sullivan in The Washington Post takes up the debate over the blurring of fiction and fact (in particular, the presentation of Lucien Carr – wait a minute, “the Lucian Carr character”) – “You’d better like it complicated”, he writes, “The film is awash in delicious and difficult ambiguities”.  These “delicious and … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 150

[Lucien Carr and Allen Ginsberg at Lucien’s wedding, January 4, 1952]

Kill Your Darlings – We mentioned last week the dissenting position, eloquently voiced by Bob Rosenthal in his post from last February – here. – “The film takes its..title too seriously”, he wrote then. “The large fabrications in the film are not so worrisome as the small ones. In any case, when the truth is stepped on and the nuance of truth is denied, the message becomes moribund”. Both Marc Olmsted in Sensitive Skin  and Brian Hassett in Brianland have taken up the cudgels and gone, perhaps, … Read More

Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 146

Joep Bremmers‘ “Ik en mijn plasje – Allen Ginsberg in Vlissingen” (“Me and my peepee”), his study of Allen’s January 1, 1983, visit to the Dutch town of Vlissingen (and the occasion of the poem “What The Sea Throws Up At Vlissingen” (included in White Shroud – Poems 1980-1985)), will be celebrated tomorrow in Vlissingen with a gala event, featuring, among others, Eddie Woods, Bremmers himself – and The Mondriaan String Quartet, who will perform, not only “September on Jessore Road” as they originally recorded it (Bremmers in his book discusses that recording), but also, several other poems, … Read More

Philip Lamantia

 

[Philip Lamantia (1927-2005) – Photographed in 1981 by Chris Felver]

Happy, immensely happy, to be able to announce the publication (long-awaited publication) of The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia. For other Lamantia-on-the-Ginsberg blog postings, see here, here and here and here and here, On this occasion, we feature…    

from “The Literary History of the Beat Generation”, Allen’s 1982 Naropa lecture series – his seminar on Philip Lamantia – a full transcription  (the audio is available here (starting approximately thirty-one-and-three-quarter minutes in) and continuing here)  

AG: So..we’ll start with Lamantia. How many know Lamantia? – I brought

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Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 143

Summertime over now and a few (belated) notes on two summer-time conferences – ESBN (the European Beat Studies Network) 2, which took place in Aalborg (the University of Aalborg), Denmark, August 28th-30th, and Out of The Shadows (focusing on Beat Women Writers), which took place at the University of Agder, Norway, September 2nd-4th.  At the former, you would have been treated to Professor Jason Lee – “Buddha With A Melody: Evolution, Sex and Ginsberg’s Influences”, Luke Walker – “Exchanges Between Ginsberg, Dylan and Blake” and Rebecca Evans – “Kaddish – Tribute To My Father” (and a whole … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 96 (Artaud-2)

[Antonin Artaud – Self Portrait, 24 June, 1947]

AG: I think (that Artaud had) some influence on Samuel Beckett actually, and an enormous influence, in the (19)40’s, on American poetry, in Black Mountain, and on myself, immediately, about 1948, in a mental hospital with Carl Solomon. Carl had a copy in French of this poem [“Here Lies” (Ci-gît)] and introduced (to me), that “Dakantal/dakis tekel/ ta redaba/ ta redabel/ de stra muntils/ o ept anis/ o ept atra..” and it was, like, a very exquisite menacing mantra, penetrating through the babble of the language of the bughouse. Yeah?… Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 93 (Philip Lamantia – 2)

[The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia – edited by Garrett Caples, Andrew Joron & Nancy Joyce Peters (with a foreward by Lawrence Ferlinghetti) forthcoming from the University of California Press, this summer]

AG: I want to read you one or two other short poems of his [Philip Lamantia‘s]

Student: What was that (last) one?

AG: That’s called “There is this distance between me and what I see” (on page 6o of Selected Poems by Philip Lamantia, City Lights, published in (19)67 – they’re his main poems up to 1966, and I put it in the Naropa library, … Read More

Spontaneous Poetics – 92 (Philip Lamantia – 1

[Philip Lamantia – from the cover of his book Narcotica, published by Auerhahn Press, San Francisco, 1959]

Allen Ginsberg’s Spontaneous and Improvised Poetics class (sic) held at Naropa Insitute, July 7, 1976 continues – [note from original transcriber, Randy Roark, “the recording is recorded a great distance from the speaker, which accounts for some of the difficulty obtaining a complete and accurate description” – however…]

AG: So I’ve been using as texts..various modern poets. So, where I left off, in terms of formation of lines on the page and the litany form of the poem.. (So), picking up

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