Saturday, February 23, 2008

Poetry News, In Brief

Charles Bukowski's former crash pad is on its way to becoming an official Los Angeles city monument. Fans are welcome to puke, piss or sh*t anywhere.
(For the full story, click here.)


(an excerpt)

you haven't lived
until you've been in a
with nothing but one
light bulb
and 56 men
squeezed together
on cots
with everybody
at once
and some of those
deep and
gross and
from hell

Oscar-winning director Pedro Almodovar is to film the autobiography of Marcos Ana, a communist poet who spent 23 years in prison during the Franco dictatorship.
(For the full story, click here.)

Mi casa y mi corazón

(sueño de libertad)

Si salgo un día a la vida
mi casa no tendrá llaves:
siempre abierta, como el mar,
el sol y el aire.

Que entren la noche y el día,
y la lluvia azul, la tarde,
el rojo pan de la aurora;
La luna, mi dulce amante.

Que la amistad no detenga
sus pasos en mis umbrales,
ni la golondrina el vuelo,
ni el amor sus labios. Nadie.

Mi casa y mi corazón
nunca cerrados: que pasen
los pájaros, los amigos,
el sol y el aire.

A 1956 recording of Allen Ginsberg reading his poem, Howl, was just found in the archives of Reed University in Portland, Oregon. It is the earliest recording of Howl, the poem that would make Ginsberg famous when it was published a few months later, sparking a landmark obscenity trial.
(To hear the recording, click here. For the full story, click here.)

(an excerpt)

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,
who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,
who passed through universities with radiant eyes hallucinating Arkansas and Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,
who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull,
who cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, burning their money in wastebaskets and listening to the Terror through the wall,
who got busted in their pubic beards returning through Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York,
who ate fire in paint hotels or drank turpentine in Paradise Alley, death, or purgatoried their torsos night after night
with dreams, with drugs, with waking nightmares, alcohol and cock and endless balls,
incomparable blind streets of shuddering cloud and lightning in the mind leaping towards poles of Canada & Paterson, illuminating all the motionless world of Time between,
Peyote solidities of halls, backyard green tree cemetery dawns, wine drunkenness over the rooftops, storefront boroughs of teahead joyride neon blinking traffic light, sun and moon and tree vibrations in the roaring winter dusks of Brooklyn, ashcan rantings and kind king light of mind,
who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride from Battery to holy Bronx on benzedrine until the noise of wheels and children brought them down shuddering mouth-wracked and battered bleak of brain all drained of brilliance in the drear light of Zoo,
who sank all night in submarine light of Bickford's floated out and sat through the stale beer afternoon in desolate Fugazzi's, listening to the crack of doom on the hydrogen jukebox,
who talked continuously seventy hours from park to pad to bar to Bellevue to museum to the Brooklyn Bridge,
a lost batallion of platonic conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off windowsills off Empire State out of the moon