IN WHICH WILL BE FOUND WHAT IS SET FORTH THEREIN

Thursday, May 18, 2006

FROM THE ARCHIVES: HAROLD CARRINGTON

[Today we begin a series of documents by Harold Carrington, a poet who died just days after being released from jail in New Jersey in the 60s. The "Ray" mentioned below is Beat poet Ray Bremser, who shared a cell with Carrington for a time. This first letter mentions a reading in D.C. This is the now legendary visit to Washington by a carload of poets, including Baraka & Ginsberg, memorialized in Baraka's poem "One Night Stand." They read at Howard University as well, and attended a party of D.C. bohemians, where they met Gaston Neal. This is also the trip during which Bremser met his wife, Bonnie, who writes of the visit in her memoirs.]

P. O. BOX 500
BORDENTOWN, N. J.

january 9, 1958

dear LeRoi Jones,

received your letter, thanks loads for information. read Yugen 1 & 2, but don't have them, had planned to get them when I started subscription but funds were low until last wk, so I could'nt make purchase until now. would like also to have a copie of 4 lady poets & Moraff's book, please let me know when they're available or anything else pub. at TOTEM PRESS &ct.

heard you and ray were reading at geo. wash. uni. on the 10th & were reading regularly in nyc, crazy!!!


yours,

harold carrington


ps. on back a short poem, which I hope (if you have time) you will read and send along with the mags. any critizem &/or opinions you might have or feel would help me improve.


'LAMENT'

while my city gently sleeps
the lonely moan a weary blues
reflecting
on the poet's silent, unobserved departure,
contemplating
the poet shoes he left behind
& are as yet
unfilled--

Ray
now I feel like Nellie Lutcher
want to sing and fornicate,
make awinging Jersey City
meet the family
friends
& Grace,
go over to some convenient village
pad
dig the cool--controversal
Brubeck beams,
(man, don't be a drag)
investigate
the cause of bitte Barbara's
motavation,
maybe chase a few Lolitas
in Central Park
on the way up to Harlem
to have a ball,
(funky)
cultivate a wine habit
so I can comprehend
& shout
THUNDERBIRD SUITE,
split to the far coast
blow in the cellar,
down to Mexico for bull fights
mushrooms
& crazy visions,
then in a blaze of violence
we'll quit-it out the back door
on some crowded city street
coming to a screeching
halt--

while my city gently sleeps
this lonely moans a weary blues
reflecting
on the poet's silent, unobserved departure,
contemplating
the poet shoes he left behind
& are as yet
unfilled...

1 comment:

Mark Tursi said...

Carrington seems like an interesting figure. I'm just now reading his work in your anthology for the first time. And, thanks for putting together _Every Goodbye Ain't Gone_. I'm using it for an African-American Lit course I begin teaching next week -- a short summer semester. Some wonderful poets and some work that I haven't seen before. I especially like Russell Atkins (I hadn't read his work until now). Really amazing poems. I'd love to see you write a blog entry devoted to the Dasein/Howard poets. I've been able to do some research on the Umbra group, but I've found very little on Dasein. What's the relation to Heidegger's notion of Dasein? Is there one? Is Percy Johnston the only member of the Dasein group in the anthology? Anyway, thanks for the anthology and the blog. I'll let you know how the students respond to the work. I'm really looking forward to using it . . . .