Archives for category: Beats

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THE TOWN AND THE CITY (Excerpt)
by Jack Kerouac

George Martin, almost as drunk as a lord, was singing loudest of them all, while the mother sat at the piano playing with a radiant and happy flush on her face. It made Mickey happy, yet also somehow sad to see his mother laughing and playing the piano like that. At Christmas, he always liked to just sit beside her on the couch. She let him have red port wine to drink with the walnuts, and watch the warm soft lights of the tree, red and blue and green, and listen to Scrooge on the radio. He liked to listen to Scrooge every year. He liked to have the house all quiet and Scrooge and Christmas songs on the radio, and everybody opening the Christmas presents after midnight Mass….

They all went in the house. The singing went on around the piano; big Mr. Cariter was doing a crazy dance with his wife’s hat on backwards. It was too much for Mickey who had to sit down in a corner and giggle. For a moment he was worried when the Christmas tree shook a little from side to side, but it had been well secured to the floor—Joe had done the job himself—and he guessed it wouldn’t fall over. He went and threw more tinsel on the branches.

Ruthey was whispering to Mrs. Mulligan: “That’s Mickey’s blue star up there on top of the tree. Every year we’ve got to get up on a chair and put it up or else! You know, or else!”

Mickey heard, but he paid no attention. He just stood before the tree with his hands clasped behind him. Then his mother came running over and threw her arms around him saying: “Oh, my little Mickey! He loves his tree so much!”

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Issued by Harcourt Brace in 1950, The Town and the City was Jack Kerouac‘s first published novel.

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AT CHRISTMAS
by Barbara Eknoian

I see innocent fall of snow
from roofs
bedangled icicles
tracks of people
and a great pall of wind
The grief of birch
bent and wintering in woods
Our baseball field is lost
The blizzard oversweeping all
I reach the top of the hill
view the pond at the bottom
ice skaters thronging by
I circle the pond, the houses
the French Canadian paisans
are stomping their feet on porches
Christmas trees on their backs
Dusk’s about to come
I’ve got to hurry,
the first heartbreaking light
comes on red and blue
in a little farm window
across the pond

“At Christmas” is based on Jack Kerouac‘s story “Home at Christmas,” found on page 5 of the Beat Collection edited by Barry Miles, available at Amazon.com.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Barbara Eknoian’s work has appeared in Pearl, Chiron Review, Silver Birch Press anthologies, Re)VerbNew Verse News, and Your Daily Poem. Twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize, her recent releases include her first novel, Chances Are: A Jersey Girl Comes of Age (available at Amazon.com) and her poetry book, Why I Miss New Jersey (Everhart Press, available at Amazon.com). Her new mantra is Carpe Diem.

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ORCHESTRA
by Ricki Hunsinger

I wept in the muffled orchestra;
tones and rhythms
calling, trampled words
made thin.
The orchestra would resume
a void, filling up private lessons
with string quartets.

“Orchestra” is based on page 95 of Minor Characters, a memoir by Joyce Johnson.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ricki Hunsinger holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Chatham College.  Her writing has been published by small independent presses.  She is currently a Baltimore-based freelance writer and assistant librarian.



			

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Released in July 2012, The Beat Hotel (directed by Alan Govenar) is an 82-minute documentary that tells the story of a remarkable group of artists — including many of the prominent Beats writers — who in 1957 converged in a cheap Paris hotel, where some of their greatest works were born.

Hotel residents included Beat poets Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso, along with novelist William Burroughs. Ginsberg began his magnum opus, Kaddish, in the hotel, located in Paris’s Latin Quarter, while Burroughs completed his most renowned work, the experimental novel Naked Lunch. Joining these Americans were artists from a variety of persuasions (photographers, painters, musicians, performance artists) who hailed from France, Britain, and other parts of the world.

The Beat Hotel tells the story of the power of art and the power of artists to influence one another in positive ways. Hotel owner Madame Rachou only allowed artists to reside in her establishment — and charged them next to nothing to live there. She felt that artists needed time and space to create — and this was her way of acting as a patron of the arts.

A good time was had by all in The Beat Hotel — and this documentary makes you feel as if you were part of it all. Eddie Woods, contributing editor for several Silver Birch Press anthologies, appears in the film — delivering a lively poetry reading outside the hotel. 

Find the movie at Amazon.com.

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$$ Abomunus Craxioms $$

by Catfish McDaris

Mummies are dancers

alcoholics make root beer

jazz down the river

licking stamps

fat automobiles laugh

 

Men die become seagulls and fly

roaches are not happy

people are not very happy

 

People get sicker quicker

the sky is the way out

laughter sounds orange

reality xists

“$$ Abomunus Craxioms $$” is based on the poem of the same name by Bob Kaufman, found on page 306 of  The Beat Book: Writings from the Beat Generation

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Catfish McDaris has been active in the small press world for 250 years. He lives in a cave at a nudist colony. His biggest seller is Prying: with Jack Micheline & Charles Bukowski. His latest book is a hardcover called Jupiter Orgasma from Lulu.com.

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REMBRANDT—SELF PORTRAIT
by Catfish McDaris

Magnificent girl
peachwolf browngold
shepherd foxglove an angel
 
I believe in God
sorrow of men
death of a friend
life sadness
 
Each brush stroke
feeding the void
 
Paint the human
face the inhuman
gold jewels let
lightdrench the
saddest.

“Rembrandt Self-Portrait” is based on Gregory Corso‘s poem of the same name, found on page 15 of The Beat Book: Writings from the Beat Generation

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Catfish McDaris has been active in the small press world for 250 years. He lives in a cave at a nudist colony. His biggest seller is Prying: with Jack Micheline & Charles Bukowski. His latest book is a hardcover called Jupiter Orgasma from Lulu.com.

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FIRE
by Brinda Buljore

Those who have burned

in the so-white fire

on the beach

now

small clowns

held to the flame

“FIire” is based on Lawrence Ferlinghetti‘s poem “Oh You Gatherer.” Read the original at poemhunter.com.

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one 1
by Thomas R. Thomas

I met
my life
my life
on the road
to Los Angeles

I was
sweetly
intellectual

Then
for the first time
there was
Marylou

I
had arrived

“*one 1*” is based on page 1 of the novel On the Road by Jack Kerouac.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Thomas R. Thomas was born in Los Angeles and grew up in the San Gabriel Valley west of LA. Currently, he lives in Long Beach, California. For his day job, he is a software QA Analyst. He volunteers for Tebot Bach, a community poetry organization, in Huntington Beach. Thomas has been published in Don’t Blame the Ugly Mug: 10 Years of 2 Idiots Peddling Poetry, Creepy Gnome, Carnival, Pipe Dream, Bank Heavy Press, Conceit Magazine, Electric Windmill & Marco Polo, and the Silver Birch Press Summer Anthology. In November 2012, Carnival released his eChapbook, Scorpio, and Washing Machine Press released a chapbooklette called Tanka. In October 2013, World Parade Books published a book of his poetry, Five Lines. Visit the author’s website at thomasrthomas.org.

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POUND AT SPOLETO
by Donna Hilbert

saw Ezra

            mandarin statue

aquiline in abstraction

            a tear drop by the aqueduct

chestnut trees in bloom

“Pount at Spoleto” is based on Lawrence Ferlinghetti‘s poem of the same name, found  on page 174 of These Are My Rivers: New & Selected Poems 1955-1993. Watch Lawrence Ferlinghetti read the poem on youtube.com.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Donna Hilbert’s latest book, The Congress of Luminous Bodies, is availble from Aortic Books or at Amazon.com.The Green Season (World Parade Books), a collection of poems, stories, and essays, is now available in an expanded second edition. Donna appears in and her poetry is the text of the documentary Grief Becomes Me: A Love Story, a Christine Fugate film. Earlier books includeMansions and Deep Red from Event Horizon, Transforming Matter andTraveler in Paradise from Pearl Editions, and the short story collectionWomen Who Make Money and the Men Who Love Them from Staple First Editions (published in England). Poems in Italian can be found in Bloc notes 59 and in French in La page blanche, in both cases translated by Mariacristina Natalia Bertoli. New work is in recent or forthcoming issues of 5AM, Nerve Cowboy, Pearl, and Poets & Artists.Learn more at www.donnahilbert.com.

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DRIFT
by Winston Plowes

My heart hates me.
 
Growing just behind my throat.
 
Like swimmers
with the dizzy procession of waves.
 
We loved,
parts of us loved,
and the rest of us will remain two persons.

“Drift” is based on page 178 of Jack Spicer‘s collection My Vocabulary Did This to Me: The Collected Poetry of Jack Spicer (Wesleyan Poetry, 2008).

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Winston Plowes is an award-winning poet who lives in the U.K. His poetry has won competition and and has appeared in Found Poetry Review, Ink Sweat & Tears, The Big Issue, Turbulence, The Best of Manchester Poets, Words Undone, and many other literary journals and has been aired on local and national radio.