AG: One thing we forgot was Chidiock Tichborne‘s elegy (on page one-three-two). That has a really pretty tune. I overlooked it last time – (one-thirty-two of the Norton (anthology)). Written in his own hand, in the tower, before his execution. So, he only had a few.. like.. that day to live. So what did he have to say? – It’s really great and it’s on the same line as Sir Walter Raleigh’s “The Lie” (remember we did that.. “”Tell men of high condition,/That manage the estate,/Their purpose is ambition… give them all the lie.” – … Read More
AG: [continuing with the poems of Sir Walter Raleigh] – Then, there’s some pretty snow, snow stuff – snow and milk – page 137. A couple of… that one stanza there, one or two stanzas ,that are on .. well some of the same theme [suffering and death]. The first line of “Nature, That Washed Her Hands In Milk” – that’s a real cute.. “Nature that washed her hands in milk”, that’s a real weird, sweet notion ((Jack) Kerouac wrote a lot of poems about man is existing in milk and living in lilies (sic). He … Read More
The execution of Sir Walter Raleigh (1552-1618) on 29 October, 1618, at Old Palace Yard, Westminster, London (Anonymous Eighteenth-Century English engraving)
AG: So, then..
Student: Why was (Walter) Raleigh executed?
AG: I don’t know. Let’s see, He went.. did go to Virginia or something, and… politics..
[Students brief discussion] – (Did he stay?)
AG: No, no he went back to England…” The night before his execution” [“Even Such Is Time”], published in 1628:
Even such is Time, that takes in trust
Our youth, our joys, our all we have,
And pays us but with earth and … Read More
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… ” –
AG: So, anyway, the reason I got off into quantity was.. [back to Sir Walter Ralegh’s “The Lie” – Allen sings, to harmonium accompaniment, the first two stanzas of the poem – “Go Soul, the body’s guest,/ Upon a thankless errand/ Fear not to touch the best;/ The truth shall be thy warrant..”] – I guess you could do it that way, easy enough.
It was something relevant to another conversation several days ago (about a poet) of this era, Sir Philip Sidney. Some students were asking if … Read More
Allen’s Spontaneous Poetry (Ballads) lectures, given at the Naropa Institute, Boulder, Colorado, in July and August of 1976, continue. This particular section continues the June 16 class.
AG: “The Lie” by Sir Walter Ralegh – Moving now from ballad to song, staying around the same time. We’re still before and after Shakespeare. There are a number of classical pieces of rhythm and imagery that those of you who are interested in poetry just as beaming mind-eye movies should know. And those of you who are writing