Meditation and Poetics – 89 – Haiku – 2 (Zenrin-kushu continues)

[“..the wave exhibits the spiritual nature of the moon”]
 [Allen continues with his reading from R.H.Blyth’s classic anthology of Japanese haiku]
     
AG: So this one that follows covers a great gap of time without actually mentioning the years properly, directly – “Meeting, the two friends laugh aloud./In the grove, the fallen leafs are many.” – [Allen repeats this allegedly Confucian poem] – “Meeting, the two friends laugh aloud./In the grove, the fallen leafs are many.” – [and continues]:
“The cock announces the dawn in the evening./The sun is bright at midnight.”
“The cries of the monkeys echo through the … Read More

Meditation and Poetics – 78 (Phanopoeia, Logopoeia and Melopoeia)

 [“Then nightly sings the staring owl/Tu-whoo!/Tu-whit! tu whoo!”  (William Shakespeare)]  

AG: Okay. I don’t know if we’ve gone through this, but Ezra Pound had three characteristics, or three marks of poetry. He said one was – what I’ve been talking about here – the phanopoeia– P-H-A-N-O-P…how do you spell “poeia” – P-O-E-A? dipthong? – P-O-E-I-A. Thank you. phanopoeia– “the casting of images on the mind’s eye”, the casting of clear, precise images on the mind’s eye. I think his example is a line of Catullus about a crimson curtain blown in the window (to indicate the breeze), or a crimson

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Meditation and Poetics – 67 -(Whitman – 10)

[Allen’s August 1978 Naropa lecture on Whitman’ s ” Song of Myself” continues here]
 
AG: Then he (Walt Whitman, in “Song of Myself”) goes into a section, in (section) seven, which is more and more close to (William Carlos) Williams’ sense of accommodating inquisitive mind – [Allen reads from Whitman’s “Song of Myself”] – “Has anybody supposed it lucky to be born?/I hasten to inform him or her it is just as lucky to die, and I know it./I pass death with the dying, and birth with the new-wash’d babe, and am not contain’d between
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Meditation and Poetics – 66 – (Whitman 9)

Student: Allen, what does he (Whitman)  mean by “soul”?
AG: I wonder – What does he mean by “soul”. Well I think we have to read on more because he’s going to define it. And he changes the meaning, actually a number of times. so you can’t really…
Here is one suggestion, a little later on, from the Calamus section [of Leaves of Grass] (I’ve mentioned it before, but see how (it) relates to his celebrating his soul) – [Allen reads from Whitman] – “Are you the new person drawn toward me?/ To begin with, take warning, I am surely far
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Meditation and Poetics – 58 – (Whitman 1)

AG:  So to Walt Whitman  – “When I Read The Book” – so this is some statement of his opening.. (I’m reading from Whitman now, from the Modern Library (edition) of Leaves of Grass, page (twenty) eight – “When I read the book, the biography famous/ And is this, then, (said I), what the author calls a man’s life?/ And so will some one, when I am dead and gone, write my life?/ (As if any man really knew aught of my life;/ Why, even I myself, I often think, know little or nothing of my real life;/Only a few hints –
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Meditation and Poetics – 56 – (Clear Seeing)

AG: (But) to begin with, you’ve got to begin somewhere, so that’s why you begin with the breath – or (William Carlos) Williams might begin with the Red Wheelbarrow, or, in his old age (a very interesting thing, he’s got his old age poem [“The World Contracted to a Recognizable Image“] about how he’s lying in bed and his mind’s fastened to a picture on the wall, like a fly clinging to a wall. As his consciousness was fading, he kept focusing just on this one picture on the hospital wall, from his hospital bed).

 

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Meditation and Poetics – 55 – (Sunyata)

 

[Japanese Zen Enso Symbol]

AG: The other aspect of the Mahayana, Mahayana style, as Reggie (Ray), I guess, may have mentioned, is the notion of  sunyata – did he get into that?.. In modern Existentialist terms that’d be “the void”, the big bad..  the big black wolf of the void, or, depending how it’s seen  In modern,

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Meditation and Poetics – 50 (Walt Whitman (intro))

 

 

 [Walt Whitman (1819-1892)]

AG: So we move from there [Robert Creeley, William Carlos Williams, Vipassana “focus on detail of the physical world”] to some expansion. Okay, we’ve already got it focused. We’ve got microscopically fine precise detail, grounded. (We’ve) burnt away, to some extent, dependency on fantasy ( or, at least, even if we don’t want to work totally with that, at least we understand that theory..). Or – as (William Carlos) Williams said, “And resolve to dream no more”. Remember the beginning poem, “Thursday”?  – I have had my dream.. /and it has come to nothing, so … Read More

Meditation and Poetics – 49 (Robert Creeley)

AG: Then Peter (Orlovsky) and I went from (Alfred) Stieglitz‘s wife, Georgia O’Keeffe, (a) great painter who had simplified and clarified her sight, to Robert Creeley‘s house in Placidas (New Mexico) , where  Creeley gave me a book of new poems (Creeley also being a student of (William Carlos) Williams.) So I thought this same recovery of our own space in Creeley’s work has equivalent terminology. His word, I always thought, for space was “place” (like, he’s got a little poem about “when we get to heaven we will all have places, they’ll be a … Read More

Meditation and Poetics – 48

 

AG: Peter (Orlovsky) and I went and spent a little time (two hours) with her (Georgia O’Keeffe). She gave us raspberry juice from her own garden. Local particulars. She was really proud of home-grown raspberry-juice, and she had enough raspberries (at the age of ninety-one)  that she could actually offer a gallon of raspberry-juice, which was terrific. It’s like that (William Carlos) Williams poem [“A Poem for Norman Macleod”] – “No bull” – You can do a lot with what’s around if you know what’s there” – I read that, didn’t I? – “The … Read More