[Randy Roark and Allen Ginsberg, July 1996, Boulder, Colorado, photograph by Kai Sibley]
We lead off this week with Randy Roark's illuminating memoir of studying under Allen, - "A Poet's Progress - Apprenticing with Allen Ginsberg - The Object Is To See Clearly" - Humility and wisdom - "You've got to learn how to transcribe your own sense impressions", "You've got to learn to be your own secretary". The piece was originally penned in 1980. He revisits it three decades on.
Poetic Likeness - Modern American Poets, the new show up at the National Portrait Gallery at The Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC features (of course), amongst a select (representative) company, Allen. The image here chosen is Wes Wilson's classic 1967 Who Be Kind To poster (after a photo by Larry Keenan).
And on the campus, last week, of Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, a charming continuing, tradition - the annual public reading (five consecutive years now!) of "Howl". English professor, Jeffrey Skoblow and History professor, Eric Ruckh combine forces. Skoblow: "It (the poem)'s a howl against repression of all kinds, sexual repressions very primarily, but also repression of free expression, political repression, religious expression, religiously motivated repression and repression of spiritual experience. It's a very broad based attack and ecstatic advocacy of freedoms".
and here's the Lowell Sun's report on the premiere production (staged reading) of "The Beat Generation", Kerouac's play -
Walter Salles' On The Road film adaptation continues to get (curiously and revealingly) "mixed reviews". Here's Ryan Gilbey's enthusiastic note in the New Statesman
- and here's Matthew Bond (in the Daily Mail) - "It's a close call, especially for anyone who hasn't read the book, but I'd say going to see On The Road is still worth the effort".