“The poet Allen Ginsberg once visited me. A likeable fellow. Genuine. Strange, mad, but genuine. I took a strong liking to him.My wife and I had a very interesting conversation with him, and in her inimitable way she asked him. “Why don’t you come to live here?” (I never ask anyone this question. People know whether and when it is time to come; that’s basic. If people want to come then it’s possible to talk to them about it. But I don’t have it in … Read More
AG: Then (Ezra) Pound (on page one thousand and six). He thinks it [Waller’s “Song”} ‘s so good that it’s his high-water mark, so he wants a... And, in Pound, it’s amazing, it’s one of the few cases in the history of English poetry where somebody made an imitation that’s really just as good as the original, because Pound’s “Envoi” of 1919 is actually as beautiful, I think, as the Waller [“Go, lovely rose“] –
So “Go dumb-born book’ – but was.. it.. you know.. Pound’s specialty was this long.. was quantitative meter,
AG: Well, it’s not that that you need to be able to understand it [Greek prosody] to write a poem. It’s not perverting your speech to get those rhythms. Rather, it is that speech does have those rhythms, and that you can follow the cadences with those rhythms, that when we were taught in drama-school and high-school primary rhythms, it was very rare that anything was taught beyond the four variants of iamb, trochee, anapest and dactyl. – that seemed to be the range of the English ear, or awareness of rhythm, or American high-school awareness of rhythm, … Read More
AG: So I would say now move on to.. 1956- moving on from 1956 to 1976. I have a series of poems which will require some music also – “Father Death Blues” – if we can get together on the stage –
My father died in 1976 in midsummer and I wrote a series of poems while he was alive because I spent a lot of time with him during the previous..during the winter that he was wasting, He was quite old and not in pain because it was a … Read More
AG: But – wait a minute – but, if you did a little bit of work with Titos Sompa [Congolese-Californian teaching at Naropa] and [jazz-drummer] Jerry Granelli in analyzing, not analyzing, just learning, the basic Afric rhythms that they use ( you’ve heard them play, haven’t you?)
AG: Have you heard Titos Sompa? – What are their names, Titos and..?
AG: Bemba.. They are teaching basic African rhythms, (which are not very different from this kind of five.. five-beat rhythms – in fact, what they are … Read More
AG: …However, it’s all shadow there, and so.. anyway, what we get from Samuel Daniel, page one-ninety – “Are there shadows that we see?/And can shadows pleasure give?/Pleasures only shadows be/Cast by bodies we conceive/And are made the things we deem/In those figures which they seem/ But these pleasures vanish fast /Which by shadows are expressed;/”Pleasures are not, if they last…” – What is beauty but a breath? – Pleasures are not if they last.
Pleasures aren’t pleasures if they last – they don’t exist unless they.. If they last, pleasures don’t exist, they’re on a breath – … Read More
Student: ( I had some difficulty with your statement about poetry when you said (you advised not to) repeat again (that) you can’t go back and review)
AG: Yes. (I’m just repeating for the mic), you had difficulty with my statement last time when I said that.. “just write what comes down into your mind , you can’t go back and revise”.
AG: What was….
Student: I had difficulty with that, because I felt that maybe somebody who … Read More
The tape begins in media res with Steven Taylor on guitar accompanying Allen (on aboriginal songsticks) in a version of “Put Down Your Cigarette Rag“. This is followed, at approximately three-and-three-quarter minutes in, (“for loud voice, oratorical “), … Read More