Thursday, March 12, 2009

Jack Kerouac & Paul Kantner





Today is the anniversary of the birth of Jack Kerouac. Whether you love 'em or hate 'em, he resonates and one has to suspect that's just the way he'd like it.

Hate him, you ask? Who might do a thing like that? Well, though the evidence is purely anecdotal, there is an awful lot of backlash against Kerouac out there these days. The beauty of Jack is he put it out there, flaws and all, and even if you feel that ultimately his was a sad tragic life, he rose above it to heights others can't even dream of. Could he be a prick? Absolutely. Was he full of, among other things, an expansive, all-encompassing love for everything? Sure was. Did he die a hopeless drunk, squandering much of what might have been? What of it?

If you're reaching for that first stone, know that a mirror is very fragile thing, indeed.

Here's a one-line poem from his Tangier days ...


I strike at that snake-heart that hurt my family



And a few shorter pieces from Pomes All Sizes. These are not traditional haiku, simply Jack working towards something, Jack being Jack, looking for Jack, and finding something.



Dusk: the bird on the fence
a contemporary
of mine




Haiku-Koan
Does a dog have
the Buddha-nature?
Water is water.





There is no sin —
I know perfectly well
where I am






POEM
I could become a great grinning host
---------------like a skeleton

Hung Up in Heaven






Haiku
The moon,
--the falling star —
Look elsewhere



One final note on Kerouac - my favorite novel of his is one that not too many folks talk about: Tristessa. It is slim, sad-romantic-tragic novel, with the core of some of his personal obsessions on full display. It is also deeply moving and a must read for anyone who has ever enjoyed any of his work.






Today is also the birthday of rock pioneer, Paul Kantner, founding member and spirit of the seminal sixties band, Jefferson Airplane. My first published piece of "writing" was a review of their breakout album, Surrealistic Pillow, for my high school paper.

Oh, yeah, we do go back. So here's a video for Paul - happy birthday. For those of you who really can't stand all that old hippie music, just happily skip on over the vid to the Lilliput poem of the day, courtesy of Twitter ...





Finally, the Twitter Lilliput Poem-of-the Day.

Enjoy.


Don


PS Just a note to let you know that the comments section of the blog was mightily spammed over night. I'm very reluctant to disable the anonymous posting function on the blog, so what I've done is enable comment moderation on posts 14 day or older. 99% of the comments come on new or recent posts, so this shouldn't effect things much. If this doesn't work, I may have to just enable comment moderation altogether. Rather than knuckle under to spammers and disable the anonymous option, I'd rather moderate. How they get by the scripting function has got me stumped and obviously blogger/google, too.

20 comments:

Ed Baker said...

yeah I got that chinese thing 7 tyme! I wonder what it said/"what-it-is?

anyway

THAT is a beauty TRISTESSA (as is The Scripture of the Golden Eternity..

sooooo:

after graduating U of Md. 1967
I "split" for Mexico..
about 20 years a f t e r JK's "tripping" in Mexico City...

so Mexico See0Oh-Dado when I got there pollution and decay filled much as it was when Jack took that taxi-cab ride... even the same dopey-prostitutes where ther most likelee still there..

any-way: so I got to San Miguel just a few weeks after New Year's 1968
and a few weeks

after "they" (as the story was being told at that cafe on the square)found Neal Cassidy's body all boozed-up just outside of town on the railroad tracks..seems like he was murdered then an official cover-up

now, the official "story" is a bit different than was circulating then

I guess "we" need to re-write e v e r y t h i n g and make it into some Row-mantic phantasy (?)

My friends in the 60's-early 70's had a psycho-derelict band , The Natty Bumpos... whenever
The Jefferson Airplane played at The Ambassador Theatre they "opened" for The Airplane

WOW!

I had "the hots" for Gracie Slick (and others)

those outfits she wore! sort-of Anne Waldman re-visits!

remember whe they were on The Smothers Brothers?

any-way no need for me to be "anonumus"... it was a thin disguise anyway...

Kokie-san

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Ed, you're the best, I'd risk a million spammers for you ...

Didn't think I was going to find anybody else, or maybe one or two others, remotely sympathetic to Tristessa ... and so it's on to Scripture which has sat on my shelf for years yet to be read ...

Saw Kantner about 10 years ago in a little bar next to City Lights ... didn't have the nerve to go up to him, it being all touristy - just let the man BE - but I was thanking him, oh yes,

Thanks to you for keeping on ... you're the co-patron saint, mentor, guru, guide, prodder and poet of this blog ... we could do one of those great "fictional" autobiographies from your accumulated comments ...

You are large, you contain multitudes ... for which I'm very grateful, indeed.

Don

Ed Baker said...

hey...

thanks

"I needed that"

as::

sometimes
it's not so easy
being myself

John Grochalski said...

Tristessa is a beaut. can't tonight but i'll be making my pilgrimage to 454 W 29th street this weekend to sneak a beer for Jack.
that said, where is the Kerouac backlash coming from? i haven't read any on it, and actually had simply assumed the Beats faded back into obscurity as they were before the pre-1990s Penguin resurgence of their work....at least Jack's.

Ed Baker said...

pee est

ya wanna see that On the Road scroll

it's being taken care of Jim Canary in the basement of The Lilly Library.. University of Indians

as Jim told me "everything here except last bit eaten by a dog!"

they got lots of "stuff" archived there lots of boxes of Cid Corman's "stuff" rooms and rooms of "stuff"
when I was there they were displaying some of
Patchens' notebooks, sketches, art..

I had to wear cotton gloves to read my own fucking letters to Cid!

they made a coppies of (almost)
everything in the files (400+ pages.. for about $100) every thing but the art which I had here xeroxes of)
and they sent the copies to me..


this is only the 1998-2004 "stuff"
that is there

John Grochalski said...

i meant West 20th street.
also, the little bar next to City Lights wouldn't happen to be Vesuvio's would it? That's the bar kerouac hid in and drank in to avoid going to meet Henry Miller.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Jay, when you lift that brew, one swig from me for the man ...

I'll have to document some of the backlash and get back ... mostly just bloggers but harsh, maybe just a generational knee-jerk reaction but when I run across it I'll let you know ...

Had a feeling you'd be the other guy who'd chime in on Tristessa ... yes - now where is Low Ghost?

Ed, that is amazing all that stuff there - is that where most of Cid's work/letters etc. went?

Don

Charles Gramlich said...

When I first read selections from "On the road" I thought they were godawful. But I've mellowed toward old Jack as I've aged.

Anonymous said...

some place CC's "stuff" is archived... much of it Cid gave to various and sun-dried folks to sell for him or thingas that he sold...

)lots of names/folks you'll recognize..


http://www.lib.udel.edu/ud/spec/findaids/cormanjo.htm

http://www.indiana.edu/~liblilly/lilly/mss/subfile/corman3ser1.html

http://speccoll.library.kent.edu/literature/poetry/corman.html

http://doddcenter.uconn.edu/findaids/Corman/MSS19970103.html



of course there re, I'm sure, much "out there" letters/ aireogrammes, post cards

that are in individual's
(private) stashes...

some of his letters to me (and mine to him) on my site
(published when he was yet "with us" and enjoyed seeing):

http://edbaker.maikosoft.com/restoration_letters/1.html

etc

Ed. A-nominist.

Anonymous said...

some place CC's "stuff" is archived... much of it Cid gave to various and sun-dried folks to sell for him or thingas that he sold...

)lots of names/folks you'll recognize..


ohhhhhh!

for many years I've been trying to recall name VESUVIOUS!

hey,

I got a story/incident that took place there in about 1972!

but, off line, please...

people under 40 might think I'm making this shit up!

http://www.lib.udel.edu/ud/spec/findaids/cormanjo.htm

http://www.indiana.edu/~liblilly/lilly/mss/subfile/corman3ser1.html

http://speccoll.library.kent.edu/literature/poetry/corman.html

http://doddcenter.uconn.edu/findaids/Corman/MSS19970103.html



of course there re, I'm sure, much "out there" letters/ aireogrammes, post cards

that are in individual's
(private) stashes...

some of his letters to me (and mine to him) on my site
(published when he was yet "with us" and enjoyed seeing):

http://edbaker.maikosoft.com/restoration_letters/1.html

etc

Ed. A-nominist.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Ed, thanks for all the details ... lots of Cid's stuff to track down with all those sites! Very much appreciated.

And, Jay, yes, Vesuvio's, that was the place, was waiting on a friend who never showed but a glorious Frisco day in a glorious Frisco bar by the glorious Frisco Bay ... freezing my ass off here in Pittsburgh, I'm about to break into song ...

Ed, didn't know about the Cassady murder rumor ... knew he'd died of exposure by the tracks, assumed he was all boozed up .. hmn.

The Natty Bumpos! What a great band name. You can still see those Airplane Smother's Brothers gigs .. YouTube maybe. I'll check.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Ed, here it is

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1cfTMdjkYM

Airplane on Smothers Brothers ...

Ed Baker said...

http://www.martinbaummusic.com/samples.htm

jeeze...


Cam bruce is in hat next to Marty then Rachel who was VERY close to Fang and John Fahey

she still lives down the street

don't think she still irons her hair it is now gray and brittle!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Fair dues, yers is a great blog , I follow it, but despite the dreadful (aren't they all?) Haiku by Jacko iam still a fan.On the road is one of the best books I have read , come trend, fashion or high water.Must check -out Tristessa. Thank you.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

TFI, many thanks, you're on the blogroll ... appreciated your kind words and, ha, to Jacko! His book of haikus was definitely better than what I excerpted, but I lost it in a pile of things and didn't find it till after I posted. So, my bad, too, eh ...

Greg Schwartz said...

never heard of Tristessa... thanks for the tip, i'll have to check it out. san francisco sure does sound nice this time of year.

Tor Hershman said...

If you REALLY hate the Hippie crap, I did back then and moi 'twas quite Hippiefied, HE ISSSSSSS the video for you.....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LubuSAgB5s

BTW: I left a brief comment on your March 5th, 09 posting.

Stay on groovin'
(With a catchphrase like this, moi must-a been hippiefied)
safari,
Tor

Anonymous said...

hey TOR,

using the word/concept "hate" and the pseudo hip french "moi"
is just masking the REAL who you are... a pretty pathetic attitude...

am not the least bit interested in connecting to your blog!

and
not at all sure of what you speak to

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Tor, great vid ...

A(E): I believe I provoked the hippie music comment with my remarks:

"Oh, yeah, we do go back. So here's a video for Paul - happy birthday. For those of you who really can't stand all that old hippie music, just happily skip on over the vid to the Lilliput poem of the day"

I think T. was being jocular in tone ... you know I live and breathe the music ...

Don

Ally Malinenko said...

So i'm chiming in late but this post slipped past me. I menioned in the post you just did including the Dead clip that Tristessa has a special place in my heart. Reminds me of falling in love with my husband.