Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 228

From the interesting collection – Literary Ephemera – 14 Postcards From Popular Authors:

 – “Dear Ed (White) – Sorry we keep missing each other, love to Justin. I have been occupied learning music, recording new original songs, collecting all my old recent poetry, returning from traveling. I just haven’t had time to stop & renew nostalgia everywhere – fancied – see you one xmas or another soon I hope – Saw a little magazine with one of your letters of Jack [Kerouac]. I visited his mother and widow in St Petersburg this year, [1970] finally, & sang them Blake’s Read More

Trungpa Visits Allen’s Class – 3 (Q & A – 2)


[Kirpal Gordon]


[David Rome]


 [William Blake]

AG:  I think Kirpal had his hand up first

Kirpal Gordon: Allen you described (William) Blake as a Vajrayana poet. I can imagine, here at Christmas-time, Santa Claus over here, and he’s a wino, an alcoholic, and a father and a son are walking towards him and the son sees a nice old man who gives presents and the father recognizes immediately that it’s an old wino (he’s picking up a little seasonal work). And.. now you have two perceptions here, and in (William) Blake’s system, one is the perception of … Read More

William Blake – (The Mental Traveler)

We might look at The Mental Traveler (also out of (William)  Blake). Does anybody know that?  The Mental Traveler? – That’s a terrific poem. [Editorial note – Allen’s earlier (1976) observations, duplicating, to some degree, what follows, can be found here] –   William Butler Yeats  thought  it was one of Blake’’s greatest poems, and he said that it was impenetrable, nobody could ever understand it  – and, apparently, no commentator has ever fully unraveled the scheme of it, (which is an obvious scheme of an eternal return, a recycle that goes back, snake eating its own tail, and … Read More

William Blake – Auguries of Innocence – 7


 [“We are led to Believe a Lie/ When we see with not Thro the Eye” (William Blake)

AG: We’re up to in Blake.. [ in William Blake’s Auguries of  Innocence] – ”To be in a Passion you Good may Do/ But no Good if a Passion is in you”
“The Whore &  Gambler by the State/ Licencd builds that Nations Fate”  – That’s kind of interesting, considering the modern licensing  of gambling in New Jersey . And you can see the Mafia taking over
“The harlots cry from street to street/ Shall weave Old Englands winding sheet”
“The Winners … Read More

Jamgon Kongtrül’s Direct Path to Enlightenment – 2

[The First Jamgon Kongtrül  [sic] – Jamgon Kongtrül the Great  (1813-1899)]

[Allen continues his discussion of Jamgon Kongtrül’s Direct Path To Enlightenment]  Student:  (Sometimes you have to be strict with someone to make them learn a lesson)

AG: Yes, but that’s.. it’s.. it’s like saying … It’s linked with “Don’t make wicked jokes”.  In other words, don’t… Skillful Means [Upaya] may be being blunt but it doesn’t mean being mean – or if there’s meanness to the bluntness then obviously it’s not Skillful Means, it’s not opening up space. “Don’t strike at the heart”, meaning..actually.. in a literal … Read More

Jamgon Kongtrül’s Direct Path to Enlightenment – 1

AG: [continuing with his annotations of William Blake’s Auguries of Innocence] This is a great one, for last night, the lecture last night (sic, August 10, 1978)) [Allen is referring to Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche‘s ongoing NAROPA lecture(s)]

“To be in a passion,  you good may do but no good if a passion is in you” – That’s the whole key to Vajrayana. That … Read More

William Blake – Auguries of Innocence – 6


[Beggar with a Lyra (c. 1900) – Photograph by Nikolay Svishchev-Paola]


[Allen continues with his observations and annotations on William Blake’s Auguries of Innocence]

AG: “The Beggars Rags fluttering in Air/Does to Rags the Heavens tear”  – That’s an interesting one – “The Beggars Rags fluttering in (the) Air” (and you just see a leprous beggar, lying down on the ground, with the rags fluttering in air).. actually, there’s a very funny sort of space-shot there – that the rags would be “fluttering in Air” ) – “Does to rags the Heavens tear” – What does that mean?… Read More

Poetics and Meditation – (William Blake – Auguries of Innocence 5)


Continuing with Allen’s reading from, and annotation of, William Blake’s “Auguries of Innocence”

“He who torments the Chafers Sprite/Weaves a Bower in endless Night” (William Blake)  
AG: Do you know  what “the Chafer” was? – “He who torments the Chafers Sprite”. What is a “Chafer“? – what kind of bird?
Student: No, (it’s) an insect..
AG: An insect ? What kind?
Student 2: (… It’s a cicada..?)

AG: Ah! – Thus – “Weaves a Bower”


[“The poison of the Snake & Newt/ Is the sweat of Envys foot” 

“The poison of the Honey

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Friday’s Weekly Round-Up – 225


Sometime since we noted great Ginsberg parodies – Remember Yelp? and Tweet? – even “Peter LaBarbera” (!) – Filip Noterdaeme has taken it one stage further, not just revisiting ‘Howl” (the opening poem) but that entire book! – Growl and Other Poems will be published by Lit Fest Press in the Spring of 2016. Meanwhile, here’s the opening salvo – “Growl” (and Noterdaeme on the thinking behind it) Gary Snyder in the current Newsweek Robert Frank in this weekend’s The New York Times Jonah Raskin‘s curt and-to-the-point interview with Lawrence Ferlinghetti published  … Read More

William Blake – Auguries of Innocence – 4


[William Blake’s script – from “Augurires of Innocence” in the Pickering manuscript]

Continuing with Allen’s reading from, and annotation of, William Blake’s “Auguries of Innocence” AG: “The Catterpiller on the Leaf/ Repeats to thee thy Mother’s grief “ – That’s a mysterious one. How do we make that one? – “The Catterpiller on the Leaf/ Repeats to thee thy Mother’s grief “

Student:  (Maybe the caterpillar being born…)

AG: Being born. Yes. Being born of earth, really. In the Book of Thel, actually, if you read the Book of Thel, that actually completely explains that couplet, because it’s

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