Tag: Allen Ginsberg

  • Close-Up On: St. George

    When Allen Ginsberg wrote in Howl that he saw the best minds of his generation and that they wailed, he added that “the Staten Island ferry also wailed.” Any Staten Island expat worth her saltwater tears can tell you about the integral relationship of the ferryboat to the city, and of the peculiarly beautiful experience […]

  • East Village Buddha

    In 1973, a 22-year-old punk rocker named Elodie Lauten saw an ad in The Village Voice seeking musicians for a women’s rock band. She went to the audition and, in her words, “banged out a couple of songs on the out-of-tune upright, along with some of my wildest Ono-style vocal improvs.” One of the guitarists […]

  • On the Beaten Path

    Channel 13’s efforts to gain wider recognition for independent New York-based filmmakers with its Reel New York series are unassailable, but a surfeit of bland virtue and go-team earnestness encumbers many of the shorts chosen for the eight-week program (Fridays at 10 p.m., starting June 9). The uniformly Handi-Cam’d docs variously comprise well-intentioned but condescending […]

  • Beat Manifestos

    The Hasty Papers is a handsome reproduction of the newsprint lit rag that painter Alfred Leslie—Cedar Tavern habitué and auteur of the Jack Kerouac film Pull My Daisy—put together 40 years ago. Leslie tried hustling people like T.S. Eliot and Fidel Castro to contribute. They didn’t. But someone named Meyer Liben sent in a 6000-word […]

  • The scary days when thousands were lobotomized on Long Island

    You have to wonder about Henry Brill’s sanity. A Yale-educated psychiatrist, he was director of Pilgrim State Psychiatric Center from 1958 to 1974. During the latter stages of his tenure at the world’s largest mental hospital, he was a national leader in the fight against marijuana. Head of the state’s Drug Abuse Commission, he railed […]

  • Poetry Project

    If Allen Ginsberg were alive today, he probably would be busy writing anti-Giuliani polemics and thinking back to the day in 1957 when the courts unbanned his famous ‘howl.’ But he’s dead, and his Levi’s jacket, his meditation beads, his Medic-alert bracelet, and other relics of his Lower East Side life are sitting on the […]

  • Blast to the Past

    When Pinki, the teenage killer and governing conscience of Srdjan Dragojevic’s harrowing The Wounds, arrives at a hospital, shot nearly dead by his best friend, he identifies himself to the operating-room nurse hovering over him as “Bond, James Bond.” As he sinks under the anesthetic, he confides to us that it’s better to die as […]

  • Howl

    David Wojnarowicz was angry enough to become a murderer, but instead he became an artist. Again and again, in his writings, he imagines himself committing savage acts— “tipping amazonian blowdarts in ‘infected blood’ and spitting them at the exposed necklines of certain politicians or nazi-preachers,” or “blast[ing] through the gates of the white house” and […]