Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Fall of America The Same Holds True Today

From Allen Ginsberg's 1970 poem "Friday the Thirteenth"

... Growth rate trippers hallucinating Everglade real estate!
     Steak swallowers zonked on Television!
Old ladies on Stockmarket habits - Old Wall Street paper
Central intelligence cutting Meo opium fields! China lobby
     copping poppies in Burma!
How long this Addict government support our oil-burner
shooting gasoline electric speed before the blue light blast
     & eternal Police-roar Mankind's utter bust?
Robot airfields soulless Market electronic intelligence busi-
     ness skyscraper streets
empty soul'd, exploding ...


  1. This is a testimony to how far ahead the Ginz was. I'd like to learn a little from him about how to criticize and surrender, let's say in one breath. It's an achievement to both be critical and to accept a degree of powerlessness. Where do we seek to make the first changes? In ourselves I believe and allow these changes to ripple outwards, and maybe come into contact with others.

    Paulie I Scrod

  2. I think Ginz might agree with you, that a single person cannot change humankind's rapacious and insatiable gorging at the planetary trough; but one person can change oneself. The "ripple outwards" effect might be all we have as individuals.

    Ginsberg was a great observer - of external phenomena and of how, internally, his brain and heart processed what he saw. His poetry is a record of that, of truth-telling his observations and not being afraid of being honest. "Candor ends paranoia" he liked to quote.

    The excerpt from "Fall of America" is very much a record of his human observation that Friday the 13th, 1970. Notice how there is no overt declaratory denunciation, no shrill judgement or condemnation. He lets the particulars of his eye-noticing take care of that; one has only to read such lines to know exactly how he feels about what he describes.