[Lew Welch and Allen Ginsberg outside City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco, October 30, 1963, (the day of the Madame Nhu protest) – photo c. John Doss]
Category Archives: Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Richard Prince’s show, American Prayer, which recently opened at, what shouldn’t appear so unlikely a location, the National Library (Bibliotheque Nationale) in Paris, includes, among other works, this work – and a self-professed Beat bibliophile fetish theme. Go here for videos of the show and of the artist. (Richard, incidentally, was, at one time, during the ’80’s, a downstairs neighbor (in Allen’s building on East 12th Street), (which, just conceivably, might be memorialized here, and is certainly – “My landlord informed me that I was moving in next to Allen Ginsberg” – recollected here). Poets Simon Pettet, John Godfrey, Larry Fagin, Richard Hell, Greg Masters, Lorna Smedman, amongst others, still reside in this (NYC, East Village) building.
The latest issue (Volume 5, issue 1 – April 2011) of The Beat Review, “a review of new Beat scholarship and other Beat works”, put out by the Beat Studies Association, is now up. We would draw your attention to Marc Olmstead’s review of the Peter Conners Ginsberg-Leary book, but there’s plenty there, besides, to get your teeth into. And check-out the back issues too. We’d recommend from the previous issue (December 2010) Kurt Hemmer’s review of the Howl movie and Jonah Raskin‘s reviews of the Letters ( June 2010 – Kerouac/Ginsberg; January 2009 – Ginsberg/Snyder).
September 201o features a review, (by Tom Pynn), of The Typewriter is Holy. Another review of Bill Morgan’s simultaneous chronological history of the Beat Generation can be read here. “I’ve been having entirely too much fun lately with The Typewriter is Holy: The Complete Uncensored History of the Beat Generation by Bill Morgan”, writes the author, Ben Steelman. Not a bad opening!
Big movie news! – Yes, more Beat movies! – Barry Miles’ book on The Beat Hotel has just been optioned by producer Pamela Dickerson as a narrative feature film. Here is the press release. Rex Weiner has come on board as co-producer. The press-release speaks of a “stylistic bi-lingual cultural reve (rave?)”. We shall see.
David Cope, who we mentioned last week, is profiled here.
Lawrence Ferlighetti may be 92 but he’s still happy to speak to the Scottish Big Issue.
Speaking of Scotland, Ginsberg-enthusiast Claire Askew, is already eye-ing June 3rd, Allen’s upcoming birthday. What are your plans for June 3rd?
& speaking of birthdays, thought you all might like to know (or be reminded) today is Bessie Smith‘s birthday.
Beat inspired Thai poet Zakariya Amataya, the first ever Muslim recipient of the prestigious South East Asian Writers Award gets a good profiling this week. Interesting character, we look forward to hearing more about him. “Maybe we call Walt Whitman the father of new American poets, but I think the second [father] is Allen Ginsberg”, he proudly declares.
Kerouac in Persian
Elsewhere from around the globe (from IBNA – the Iran Book News Agency), Jack Kerouac’s ‘Book of Haikus’, we’ve just heard, has just been translated into Persian by the Iranian-born,
English-based poet, writer, broadcaster, Alireza Hassani (pen-name Alireza Abiz), and is to be published in that country, so they say, “in the next two months”.
[Lawrence Ferlinghetti in his office with pooch, Whitman photo, files, coatracks, bookbags, posters at City Lights, up on balcony, B’way and Columbus Ave, San Francisco 1984. Allen Ginsberg (c. Allen Ginsberg Estate)]
Speaking of cultural ambassadors, “Allen Ginsberg was a great cultural ambassador. He spoke taxi-cab Spanish. He stayed up all night in Chile translating “Howl” into Spanish with other poets.” Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s illuminating memories of the Latin American poets, and of the Russian poets, and of much else besides, appears in Jesse Tangen-Mills interview in the current issue of Guernica – A Magazine of Art and Politics. Well worth a read. The 91-year-old Ferlinghetti remains, as Tangen-Mills points out , “revolutionary” and “unrepentant.”
Patti Smith – Congratulations
Allen’s cousin caught this one and brought it to our attention. Not quite sure how we feel about this!
Ya only really get to see the top of Waits’ head here, but the sound quality is definitely decent enough to warrant a post. Check it out on Americansongwriter.com >>
Waits was performing as were Patti Smith, Marcus Shelby, Steve Earle, Michael McClure and others in honor of Ferlinghetti at San Francisco’s 11th annual Litquake literary festival last Saturday >>
[Lawrence Ferlinghetti in his office with pooch, Whitman photo, files, coat racks, book bags, posters, at City Lights up on balcony, B’way at Columbus Avenue, San Francisco, October 1984. Allen Ginsberg (c. Allen Ginsberg Estate)]
…and we just happened to be sifting through the Bureau of Public Secrets website’s enormous catalog, where they’ve posted Kenneth Rexroth’s complete columns from the San Francisco Examiner, and came across this timely tidbit. It’s from from exactly 50 years ago about Ferlinghetti, freshly returned from a trip to South America with Ginsberg . (It begins just below the Beckett and Ionesco paragraphs >>)