AG: … Then. Willliam Apollinaire (Guillaume Apollinaire), the Frenchman also did Calligrammes (so that would be.. the French name for that form is a calligramme – design on the page). He has one called “il pleut” which is … “From the eaves… ” – From.. (F-r-o-m. t-h-e-e-a-v-e-s -t-h-e-g-l-i-s-t-e-n-i-n-g-d-r-o-p-s -o-f -w-a-t-e-r-f-a-l-l-o-v-e-r – t-h-e-w-h-o-l-e-c-i-t-y) – I don’t know [Allen offers a translation] – “From the eaves the glistening raindrops falls down and drains over the whole city”. You know and it’s all.. the lines are let down in strings from the … Read More
“In 1965, the U.S. troop level in Vietnam exceeded 500,000. Allen Ginsberg became perhaps the most flamboyant of many literary opponents to the war. Bearded, beat and outspokenly homosexual, his appeal was great to the young and already converted. (Pull out your old copy of Planet News (City Lights, 1968) which contains “Wichita Vortex Sutra“). Allen’s attack was on the conscience of the government and the capitalist … Read More
Larry Fagin, poet, editor, teacher, long-time leading member of the so-called “New York School” of poetry, died yesterday. He was 79 years old.
An important co-worker with Allen at Naropa (and, coincidentally, upstairs neighbour in his 12th Street tenement in Manhattan), he was, (though not himself a Buddhist), alongside fellow St Marks poet, Anne Waldman, one of the key figures in the initial years of that on-going experiment. Allen himself was quite unequivocal – “I don’t know of a better editor and teacher of poetry and prose than Fagin”, he once declared.
Larry’s early teaching there can … Read More
“Growing up with queer films, there was always some sort of stigma attached to gay characters or gay sexuality, and I didn’t want the sex scene to feel like that in any way. I wanted the arc of the scene to go from nervousness to a place of pure enjoyment … Read More
[Kenneth Koch – Portrait of Kenneth Koch by Alex Katz]
Kenneth Koch Q & A from 1979 continues
KK: Maybe we should have some more questions. What would you like me to tell you about?
Student: What do you at Columbia?
KK: I teach three courses there. I’m a regular Professor. I teach a writing course with twelve students. It’s, I mean, in this writing course, it’s not just a poetry-writing course,
I have people writing poems and stories and plays. I even usually have them write, sometime in the year, one long lonely piece of criticism, because … Read More
[translated in 1950, this is the cover to the 1972 Dolmen Press, Dublin edition of Guillaume Apollinaire‘s Zone translated by Samuel Beckett, the first seperate appearance of the text to appear in print]
[Pierre de Gasztold – illustration from “Les poètes voyagent de Baudelaire à Henri Michaux” – Henri Parisot, Delamain et Boutelleau, Paris, 1946]
AG: (So) then we have (finally) “Zone” – “You are tired at last of this old world/ O shepherd Eiffel Tower the flock of bridges bleats at the morning/ You have had enough of life in this Greek and Roman antiquity/ Even … Read More