WHEN thou must home to shades of underground,
And there arrived, a new admirèd guest,
The beauteous spirits do engirt thee round,
White Iope, blithe Helen, and the rest,
To hear the stories of thy finish’d love
From that smooth tongue whose music hell can move;
Then wilt thou speak of banqueting delights,
Of masques and revels which sweet youth did make,
Of tourneys and great challenges of knights,
And all these triumphs for thy beauty’s sake:
When thou hast told these… Read More
HARK, all you ladies that do sleep!
The fairy-queen Proserpina
Bids you awake and pity them that weep
You may do in the dark
What the day doth forbid;
Fear not the dogs that bark,
Night will have all hid.
But if you let your lovers moan,
The fairy-queen Proserpina
Will send abroad her fairies every one,
That shall pinch black and blue
Your white hands and fair arms
That did not kindly… Read More
Allen Ginsberg’s January 1980 Naropa class on Basic Poetics continues with transcription of one-on-one conversation that appears to take place after the formal end of the class
AG: Pat (sic), did you ever read that – (Thomas)Campion‘s treatises on themusic and poetry?
Student (Pat (sic)) : I’ve read theObservations in The Art of English Poesie
AG: Is that the one that takes up quantitative.?
Student (Pat): Yeah
AG: Do you have a copy of Campion? Could you prepare a little summary of his ideas on quantity…You know what he says about that?
Allen to his brother Eugene, August 14, 1954:
“You would love Catullus. I read a collection of translations edited by an Aiken [The Poems of Catullus – edited by William A Aiken (1950)], and am reading him in Latin now with aid of a pony. Selections in anthologies won’t give you the idea. Get a book of translations from all times, from library. The Aiken book is good, includes translations by Ben Jonson, Byron, Landor, Campion, etc”
[Allen Ginsberg throwing out the first ball at the San Francisco Giants game at Candlestick Park, June 2, 1994 – Photo courtesy Steve Silberman]
Our friend, Chris Funkhouser has a must-read piece (part of a 4-part series) in Jacket 2 on his experiences with audio recording (and in this case, in particular, the recording of Allen Ginsberg). “I studied with Allen..at Naropa in 1986”, he writes. “He was my teacher and friend from then onward. There’s no question my sense that poetry could (if not should) be an electrified-multimedia performance came from (him). With so many years of practice … Read More
We’ve already featured them reading together before – from 1974 here, and from 1976, here, but here, from 1977 is vintage audio of Allen and Anne Waldman reading. Allen begins, thanking his sponsors and setting out his plans.
AG: We owe thanks to Naropa and Peter Lieberson and Meg for arranging this luxurious space for us to orate in, because, actually, it turned out to be a nice situation. I’m going to begin where I left off last summer (1976) in poetry reading with a series of poems on my father’s death – called “Don’t Grow Old” … Read More
(Continuing with Allen Ginsberg’s class on “Spontaneous Poetics” at Naropa Institute, from June 28 1976)
AG: Breath-stop is the next measuring concept. In (William Carlos) Williams case, and in Robert Creeley‘s case, and in my case, and in Charles Olson’s case, and in the practice of many modern poets, one way they divide the line when they’re doing free verse is.. (because these are all the elements, still, in open-form verse, (that) I’m talking about, saying there’s a … Read More
AG: George [sic -a Naropa student], were you ever able to figure out the music? There’s a book of (Thomas) Campion in the library, with his own music. And those of you who are interested in music and can read music might check out the book because Campion has an essay on poetics, an essay on rhythm and rhythm in relation to music, on how to write songs, 1600, the best ear possible. [Allen is presumably referring to Campion’s Observations in the Art of English Poesie (1602)]
AG: “…Fair lined skippers for the cold/ With buckles of the purest gold,/ A belt of straw and ivy buds,/ With coral clasps and amber studs;/ And if these pictures may thee move,/ Come live with me and be my love… ” –