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Derek Walcott, Nobel Prize Poet & Playwright Dies at 87

March 17th, 2017
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    January 23, 1930, Castries, Saint Lucia
    Died: March 17, 2017, Saint Lucia
    NYtimes obit

    Derek Walcott, whose intricately metaphorical poetry captured the physical beauty of the Caribbean, the harsh legacy of colonialism and the complexities of living and writing in two cultural worlds, bringing him a Nobel Prize in Literature, died early Friday morning at his home near Gros Islet in St. Lucia. He was 87.

    BBC obit

    His great skill, and gift to literature, was the way in which he used his unique poetic voice to explore and explain the world from a largely unseen perspective.
    He was never parochial or nationalistic, quite the opposite in fact. Derek Walcott was a master at using the specific to identify common ground and universal themes, illuminating both the individual and the collective.

    Walcott wrote dozens of books of poetry and plays, among them his epic poem Omeros and his Obie-winning drama, Dream on Monkey Mountain.

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    (Mark Strand, Joseph Brodsky, Adam Zagajewski, and Derek Walcott in Brodsky’s garden)

    via

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    Seen here with Seamus Heaney in Dún Laoghaire DART station, 1989 [photo: Matt Kavanagh]

    Brilliant poets find one another: their world is very small even though their influence is wide and deep. Being a self-described “country boy” didn’t mean that Derek was cut off from so-called literary society. Derek’s closest poet friends, the Russian-born Joseph Brodsky and Irish poet Seamus Heaney, wrote about the pain and fascinating distance and longing that comes with being in exile.

    A Mighty Poet has died (New Yorker)

    Love After Love
    The time will come
    when, with elation
    you will greet yourself arriving
    at your own door, in your own mirror
    and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

    and say, sit here. Eat.
    You will love again the stranger who was your self.
    Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
    to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

    all your life, whom you ignored
    for another, who knows you by heart.
    Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

    the photographs, the desperate notes,
    peel your own image from the mirror.
    Sit. Feast on your life.
    Derek Walcott

  • Moring Paramin Derek Walcott and Peter Doig (See art by Peter Doig)

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    Photograph: From left: Tatyana Tolstaya; Mark Strand; Susan Sontag; Richard Locke, chairman of the School of the Arts Writing Division, and Derek Walcott.

  • Love Song to Poetry, Paterson – Jim Jarmusch, Adam Driver and Ron Padgett

    March 13th, 2017
  • Jim Jarmusch: I called the character Paterson, in the film, because of the poem Paterson by William Carlos Williams. He makes a metaphor in the poem of a landscape above the waterfalls there as being like a man. And then I just kept this metaphor; “I’ll make a film about a man named ‘Paterson’ who lives in Paterson, who writes poetry,” you know.

    Jim Jarmusch and Jonas Mekas on Film, Poetry and Trump

    1aCarlosWilliamsPaterson

    Jonas Mekas: Where is poetry in your life?
    Jim Jarmusch: It’s important to me. I read a lot of poetry. I studied with Kenneth Koch and David Shapiro at the New York School, and I’ve been guided by poets all my life.

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    Nagatoshi and Adam Driver (“Nagatoshi from Mystery Train reuninted with Jim Jarmusch in Paterson)

  • My journey from Marine to actor | Adam Driver

  • 1asamPatersonpoem

    (Youtube excerpt here )

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    Golshifteh Farahani
    (Golshifteh’s last film performance in Iran was in About Elly directed by Asghar Farhadi. According to her IMDB -Golshifteh was separated from Louis Garrel.)

  • LA Times on Paterson Poetry

  • Jim Jarmusch

  • Ron Padgett (Who wrote 3 poems for “Paterson”)

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    (Bill Berkson and Ron Padgett)

    Previous post on Bill Berkson

    nine poems by Ron Padgett

    Night Jump

    At night Chinamen jump
    on Asia with a thump

    Who but Frank O’Hara
    could have written that?
    and then gone on to speak of
    love and something he calls grace.
    To start out so funny
    and end up with mystery and grace —
    we should all be so lucky.

    New Year’s Day Poem by Joseph Brodsky – Happy New Year 2017

    January 2nd, 2017
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  • Joseph Brodsky 1aBrodsky and Baryshnikov

    New Year’s Day poem by Joseph Brodsky

    1 January 1965

    The Wise Men will unlearn your name.
    Above your head no star will flame.
    One weary sound will be the same—
    the hoarse roar of the gale.
    The shadows fall from your tired eyes
    as your lone bedside candle dies,
    for here the calendar breeds nights
    till stores of candles fail.

    What prompts this melancholy key?
    A long familiar melody.
    It sounds again. So let it be.
    Let it sound from this night.
    Let it sound in my hour of death—
    as gratefulness of eyes and lips
    for that which sometimes makes us lift
    our gaze to the far sky.

    You glare in silence at the wall.
    Your stocking gapes: no gifts at all.
    It’s clear that you are now too old
    to trust in good Saint Nick;
    that it’s too late for miracles.
    —But suddenly, lifting your eyes
    to heaven’s light, you realize:
    your life is a sheer gift.

    Prankster Poet Painter Picabia’s Perpetual Movement – Francis Picabia at MoMa

    November 22nd, 2016
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    Picabia at MoMa..

  • Francis Picabia – 22 January 1879 – November 30, 1953

    Poet, painter, self-described funny guy, idiot, failure, pickpocket, and anti-artist par excellence, Francis Picabia was a defining figure in the Dada movement; indeed, André Breton called Picabia one of the only “true” Dadas.

  • Picabia

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    Daughter Born without Mother
    1916-18

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    L’oeil Cacodylate, 1921

    Google Picabia

    I Am A Beautiful Monster
    Who is with me is against me.

  • Duchamp, Beatrice Wood 1adadabeatricewconeyisland at Coney Island

    “Entr’acte,” the avant-garde film he made in 1924 with René Clair, and his contentious series of figurative paintings from the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s. Borrowing from art history, soft-core pornography and commercial art, they presage Pop Art, appropriation art and Neo-Expressionism.

  • Perpetual Movement 1adadapi

    “Our Heads Are Round So Our Thoughts Can Change Direction” is a Picabia aphorism consistent with another one: “The only movement is perpetual movement.” The show has a propulsive, joyous energy. Something new, different and often challenging waits in nearly every gallery.

    Dada is like your hopes: nothing like your paradise: nothing like your idols: nothing like your heroes: nothing like your artists: nothing like your religions: nothing

    Previous post

    Love Lasts Forever the Poet/Zen Master Leonard Cohen said, His last Album was “You Want it Darker”

    November 11th, 2016
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    photo via Cohencentric
    See the photo of Leonard Cohen’s last album here and explore this mega Leonard Cohen site.

  • Can’t imagine a world without Leonard Cohen, a deep void we must face in “Future” and hear his song again.

    Lonard Cohen dead at 82 (Rolling Stone)

    Yeats and Federico Garcia Lorca were Cohen’s favorite poets.

    Long time ago I was about 15 in my hometown of Montreal, I was rumbling through….or rambling as you say down here. We say “rumbling” .Actually we don’t say that at all. I was rumbling through this bookstore in Montreal. And I came upon this old book, a second-hand book of poems by a Spanish poet. I opened it up and I read these lines : “I want to pass through the arches of Elvira, to see your thighs and begin weeping”. Well that certainly was a refreshing sentiment. I began my own search for those arches those thighs and those tears….Another line “The morning through fistfuls of ants at my face” It’s a terrible idea. But this was a universe I understood thoroughly and I began to pursue it, I began to follow it and I began to live in it. And now these many years later, it is my great privilege to be able to offer my tiny homage to this great Spanish poet, the aniversary of whose assassination was celebrated two years ago. He was killed by the Civil Guards in Spain in 1936. But my real homage to this poet was naming my own daughter Lorca. It was Federico Garcia Lorca. I set one of his poems to music and translated it. He called it “Little Vienese Waltz”. My song is called “Take this Waltz”.

  • Cohen and Dylan 1abobcohen

  • With Sonny Rollings – Who by Fire

    More from Leonard Cohen Archive.

    Bob Dylan’s early interview by Studs Terkel in 1963

    October 17th, 2016
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    Photo by Danny Lyon.

  • Dylan 1dylan_terkel and Studs Terkel

    Studs Terkel interviews a very young Bob Dylan in 1963 and it’s incredible

    If you’re a fan of Dylan’s early work, I implore you to spend an hour with this stellar interview that he did with Studs Terkel from the spring of 1963 . You won’t regret it. It’s a very cool piece of history in my humble opinion.

    Bob Dylan is a notoriously tough person to interview and that’s definitely the case here, even this early in his life as a public persona. On the other hand, Terkel is a veteran interviewer, one of the best ever, and he seems genuinely impressed with the young man who was just 21 at the time and had but one record of mainly covers under his belt. Terkel does a good job of keeping things on track as he expertly gets out of the way and listens while gleaning what he can from his subject. It’s an interesting match-up.

  • Studs Terkelstudsterkel51 “guerilla journalist”

    Painting by Beverly Finster.

    If Not For You, Nobel, I Would Not Be Posting This + Ben Whishaw as Dylan

    October 14th, 2016
  • (Visiting Rubin Hurricane Carter)


  • Dylan and Levon Helm

    Bob Dylan and Levon playing Ping Pong here.

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    Via Ray Grasse –

    Bob Dylan wins the Nobel Prize for literature – the award will be formally handed out on Dec. 10th, just as Jupiter crosses over the top of his horoscope (which pretty much confirms that birth time.)

  • Cohen – Dylan Interface –

    It wasn’t [Bob Dylan’s] originality which first impressed me, but his familiarity. He was a person out of my books, singing to the real guitar. Dylan was what I’d always meant by the poet. – Leonard Cohen

  • If Nor For you – (photo by Willie Simpson)1bobwilliesimpson

  • Happy birthday Ben Whishaw 1benbob

  • See Bob Dylan – photo by Danny Lyon..

    The Hollow Men – Photo of T.S. Eliot & Ted Hughes + Willem Dafoe as Tom in Tom & Viv

    September 26th, 2016
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    Ted Hughes and Eliot

    TS Eliot, his wife Valerie and Ted Hughes at – in Hughes’s words – ‘one of the champagne and guinness parties’ that Faber used to throw

    Photograph: Faber Archive

  • This is the way the world ends
    This is the way the world ends
    This is the way the world ends
    Not with a bang but a whimper.

    The Hollow Men

    The Hollow Men
    Mistah Kurtz-he dead
    A penny for the Old Guy

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    Tom and Viv

  • The Fraught Friendship of T. S. Eliot and Groucho Marx (New Yorker)

  • Bernie Sanders & Burlington Snow – a Poem by Allen Ginsberg

    September 7th, 2016
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    See Allen Ginsberg’s Handwritten Poem For Bernie Sanders, “Burlington Snow” (1986)

    Ginsberg blog

    Bernie and Allen 1allenberniecartoon

  • With his big brother 1berniechild

    Happy birthday Bernie Sanders!

    Photos via

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    via Andrew Bonheler
    See previous post on Bernie Sanders (Contempt for Voters, theater of cruelty, undemocratic primary of 2016.

  • Martin Buber. I and thou.

    “The real struggle is not between East and West, or capitalism and communism, but between education and propaganda.”
    ― Martin Buber

    “An animal’s eyes have the power to speak a great language.”
    ― Martin Buber
    Sparrow Impromptu in Portland – Hilarious Falcon Flying from Bosnia to Syria – War and Peace Spring of 2016

    Comic Cat, Lit Cat, Film Noir Cat – Happy Int’l Cat day!

    August 8th, 2016
  • The Cop and Peter Cook the Comic Genius

  • Doris Lessing
    Doris Lessing archive here.

    Herman 1HermanHesse
    and the Cat.
    . another photo from writing & the feline muse.

    Herman Hesse - The Glass Bead Game

  • Yuichi Hibi – Neco hibineko

    Kay Ryan
    A CAT/A FUTURE

    A cat can draw
    the blinds
    behind her eyes
    whenever she
    decides. Nothing
    alters in the stare
    itself but she’s
    not there. Likewise
    a future can occlude:
    still sitting there,
    doing nothing rude.

  • Patricia Highsmith (archive) 1patriciaJeannette

    Frank O’Hara & Bill Berkson – Hymns of St. Bridget

    August 3rd, 2016
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    With Frank Ohara

    In a biographical note he wrote for An Anthology of New York Poets (edited by Ron Padgett and David Shapiro in 1970), Berkson paid tribute to O’Hara’s deep influence on him:

    General ‘cultural’ education through friendship with Frank O’Hara: the Stravinsky-Balanchine Agon (and Edwin Denby’s essay on it), Satie (we created four-hand ‘annoyances’ at various apartments, once played for Henze in Rome), Feldman, Turandot, a certain Prokofiev toccato, Virgil Thomson (I had heard a recording of Four Saints at Harry Smith’s, Providence, 1957), movies … we read Wyatt together, recited Racine, skipped through galleries, collaborated on The Hymns of St. Bridget 1961-64, a note on Reverdy for Mercure de France 1961.

    As he later told Brad Gooch, “I listened hard to what he said about poetry, about all the arts, about people, about living.”

  • Read For the Chinese New Year & for Bill Berkson by Frank O’Hara here.

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    Hymns St Bridget (jacket)

    Hymns Of St. Bridget begins simply enough in October 1960 as the first collaboration between Bill Berkson and Frank O’Hara — from there it multiplies energetically into an ongoing exchange between Berkson and O’Hara that includes the FYI poems, The Letters of Angelicus and Fidelio, and Marcia: An Unfinished Novel.

    Bill Berkson (1939–2016)

    Wiki

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    With Ron Padgett

    via

  • Muhammad Ali and Marianne Moore Wrote a Poem together

    June 4th, 2016
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    via

    He announced that if she was the greatest poetess in the country, the two of them should produce something together — “I am a poet, too,” he said — a joint effort sonnet, it was to be, with each of them doing alternate lines. Miss Moore nodded vaguely. Ali was very much the more decisive of the pair, picking not only the form but also the topic: “Mrs. Moore and I are going to write a sonnet about my upcoming fight in Houston with Ernie Terrell,” he proclaimed to the table. “Mrs. Moore and I will show the world with this great poem who is who and what is what and who is going to win.”

    “We will call it ‘A Poem on the Annihilation of Ernie Terrell,’ ” Miss Moore announced. “Let us be serious but not grim.”

    “She’s cute,” Ali commented. (read here via )

    After we defeat Ernie Terrell
    He will get nothing, nothing but hell,
    Terrell was big and ugly and tall
    But when he fights me he is sure to fall.
    If he criticize this poem by me and Miss Moore
    To prove he is not the champ she will stop him in four,
    He is claiming to be the real heavyweight champ
    But when the fight starts he will look like a tramp
    He has been talking too much about me and making me sore
    After I am through with him he will not be able to challenge Mrs. Moore.

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    Photo by Danny Lyon – 1970.