Category Archives: Gregory Corso
(update May 4: We’ve contacted the SSC Archives admin and are told things should be back up shortly. They’ve gone through a website revamp and obviously have some kinks to sort out. )
(Note: We’ve been unable to load any of the links from the SSC Archives site, even with the latest real audio player installed, but thought we’d post this per chance someone out there is able to, and could clue everyone else into how to. Not having any luck reaching SSC Archives either)
Following the extraordinary material announced here and here, here’s another archive of “Beat treasures”. An “online exhibit”, featuring material from the April 1973 (Jack) Kerouac Symposium at Salem State College. In short video clips, Allen “describes his feelings upon seeing Kerouac in his coffin”’; “discusses his interview in Gay Sunshine magazine in which he revealed his homosexual encounters with Kerouac”; “discusses a section from On The Road”; “discusses Kerouac’s last meeting with Neal Cassady in June of 1964 in New York City”; and, (with Andrew Latham and Gregory Corso), “discuss(es) “the legend of Kerouac’s “teletype” writing technique”. There is also audio of Allen reading “Memory Gardens”, “Dream Record, June 9, 1955” and Kerouac’s “Scripture of The Golden Eternity (number 64)”. Gregory Corso is also included, reading his poem, “The Mad Yak”.
But this is adaptation, not documentation, so we’re talking On The Road 2 here! Jean-Marc Barr has been cast as Kerouac (Jack Duluoz); Josh Lucas, Cody Pomeray/Neil Cassady – the obvious question, who’s gonna play Irwin Garden (a.k.a. Allen)? Right now, the actor Anthony Edwards (who’s certainly in the cast) is whispered to be taking that part – but, no, he’ll be playing Lorenzo Monsanto (Lawrence Ferlinghetti), it turns out – and Balthazar Getty plays Michael McClure. Actor, Patrick Fischler is the latest to now be rumored to have the part (but) no confirmation at the time of writing,
Allen encounters? We’ll continue to be featuring them. This one by Sam Hamod, a lively account for Contemporary World Poetry, of an Iowa pig roast (yes, you heard that right!) makes for occasionally excruciating reading. As does, in a different way, Ed Ward’s account of William Burroughs Jr (specifically about him and only tangentially about Allen, but well-written, and worthy, we think, to be included here).
Two other interesting (well-researched) accounts of so-called “marginal Beat figures” – Al Filreis in the new Jacket2 writes about Elise Cowan – and Keith Seward tracks down/uncoversthe curious story of Jacques Stern (Stewart Mayer’s memoir, in the same forum, is also well worth consulting, alongside poems by Stern, an introduction by William Burroughs and thecomplete text of Stern’s novel, The Fluke).
More Kerouac news – Jack Kerouac and Lowell. We remember, several years back, the fight that several local residents had in convincing the city fathers to honor its native son. That was then, this is now. Lowell Celebrates Kerouac!, the 24th (sic!) annual Kerouac Festival is scheduled for October 2011. Meantime, there’s this, the “Kerouac audio project“:”The idea is to use Kerouac – and his worldwide fame – as an entry point into the cultural and social history of Lowell at mid-century. The voices in the interviews (in this broad proposed oral history) will tell the stories, making concrete abstract topics like class, labor, race, gender, sexuality, immigration, cultural hybridity, and “the American dream”. The Kerouac audio project is part of a larger plan to further develop Lowell’s creative economy, in part around Kerouac. We want to continue to develop the city’s rich Kerouac materials and connections, using Jack as a portal into all sorts of other parts of the twentieth-century history of Lowell – one of the most interesting cities in all the United States of America”.
Last week, we asked what you might be up to for June 3rd, (Allen’s 85th birthday); well, plenty of New Yorkers know exactly what they‘ll be up to. The East Village’s annual Howl! Festival is scheduled to coincide this year with that date. Preparations are already being made. Poet,C.A.Conrad, has launched a special Allen Ginsberg edition of his video-blog, Jupiter 88 – “Poets are invited to share the importance of Ginsberg’s poetics and activism that continues to CHANGE THE WORLD!’. Many more voices to come, but, first up, Maryland-based poet, and director of the Rose O’Neill Literary House, Mark Novak : “..Allen really taught me that poetry is a great device for political protest..and I think in this age and this era of what we see happening in Wisconsin, what we see happening to working people in Ohio, with labor educators in Michigan, and public sector workers all around the country, that the message of Ginsberg and the message of poets to be political and speak out, is probably more important than ever”.
“The prophecies of Marinetti are coming true some of them, the wilder, more poetic ones”, so, gleefully, declares Allen in this quintessentially 1967 documentary film by Antonello Branca, What’s Happening? What, indeed, is happening? Poets and painters and a brash New York City just for that moment in time and space come together. Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg candidly speak (Andy speaks!). Allen appears first (around six and a half minutes in) being interviewed as he walks along the street and then (circa 3o minutes in) is seen holding forth at a street cafe. Gregory Corso makes a cameo appearance right at the very end (with a baby!). He gets the punch line. “War makes people crazy”.
“We have all come here together. Andy Warhol and The Velvet Underground, poet Gerard Malanga, over here, if you move your camera, poet Ed Sanders of a rock n roll group called The Fugs [unfortunately mis-translated on the screen by the Italian translator as The Fags!]..over (t)here, Tuli Kuperfberg, a poet and singer in The Fugs, over there, writing at the table. Peter Orlovsky with the long hair, who is a poet and also a singer, behind him, his brother, who was in a madhouse for 14 years. He’s a superstar of the Underground. Oh, and Jonas Mekas, Jonas Mekas, head of the Filmmakers Cooperative. He’s the one who puts together films like Flaming Creatures and The Brig and sends them around Europe and in America, the impresario. He also makes films, which he’s doing now.”
[Hal Chase, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, Morningside Heights, New York City. Photograph possibly snapped by Joan Burroughs, winter 1944-45 c. Allen Ginsberg Estate]