This chronology of Allen's life was written by him and updated every year. It was sent along with his press packet to venues, university, an other various hosts in advance of readings or classes he'd give.
Grammar High School Paterson New Jersey, B.A. Columbia College 1948; associations with Jack Kerouac, Wm. S. Burroughs, Herbert Huncke & Neal Cassady begun 1945 NYC and next decade after with Gregory Corso, Peter Orlovsky companion 1954 and poets Michael McClure, Philip Lamantia, Gary Snyder & Philip Whalen in San Francisco became known 1955 on as "Beat Generation" and/or "San Francisco Renaissance" literary phases; acquaintance with William Carlos Williams 1948 & study of his relative-footed American speech prosody led to Empty Mirror early poems with W.C.W. preface, as later Williams introduced Howl .
Illuminative audition of William Blake's voice simultaneous with Eternity-vision 1948 and underground bust-culture Apocalypse realization conduced to 8-month stay NY State Psychiatric Institute and later preoccupation with Gnostic-mystic poetics and politics, residence in India & Vietnam Japan visit 1962-63, mantra chanting beginning with Hare Krishna Mahamantra and Buddhist Prajnaparamita (Highest Perfect Wisdom) Sutra same years, & experiment with poetic effects of psychedelic drugs beginning 1952 and continuing with Dr. Timothy Leary through Cambridge experiments 1961: certain texts Howl part II (1955) and Wales Visitation (1967) were written during effects of Peyote & LSD respectively.
Travel began early 1950's half year Mayan Mexico, several voyages years Tangiers-Europe late 50's on, earlier merchant marine sea trips to Africa & Arctic, half year Chile Bolivia & Peru Amazon 1960, half year Cuba Russia Poland Czechoslovakia culminating May Day 1965 election as King of May (Kral Majalis) by 100,000 Prague citizens.
Literary Awards: obscenity trial with Howl text declared legal by court S.F. 1957, Guggenheim Fellowship 1963-64, National Institute of Arts and Letters Grant for poetry 1969. Contributing Editor: Black Mountain Review #7 edited by Robert Creeley; Advisory Guru: The Marijuana Review; writing published variously in Yugen, Floating Bear Mimeo, Kulcher, Big Table, City Lights Journal, "C", Evergreen Review, Fuck You/A Magazine of the Arts, Atlantic Monthly, Life, New Yorker, Look, N.Y. Times, Izvestia, Rolling Stone, Underground Press Syndicate, etc.
Participated in college poetry readings & NY literary scene 1958-61 with Leroi Jones & Frank O'Hara; Poets' Pull My Daisy, Robert Frank Film 1959; early Trips Festivals with Ken Kesey Neal Cassady & Merry Pranksters mid-'60's; Vancouver '63 & Berkeley '65 Poetry Conventions with Olson, Duncan, Creeley, Snyder, Dorn & other poet friends; Albert Hall Poetry Incarnation, readings with Voznesensky in London, and anti-Vietnam War early Flower Power marches in Berkeley 1965.
Attended mantra-chanting at first Human Be-in San Francisco 1967; conferred at Dialectics of Liberation in London & gave poetry readings with poet father Louis Ginsberg there & in NY; testified U.S. Senate hearings for legalization of psychedelics; arrested with Dr. Benjamin Spock blocking Whitehall Draft Board steps war protest NY same year. Tear gassed chanting OM at Lincoln park Yippie Life-Festival Chicago 1968 Presidential convention, then accompanied Jean Genet & William Burroughs on front line Peace "Conspiracy" march led by Dave Dellinger.
Mantric poetics & passing acquaintance with poet-singers Ezra Pound, Bob Dylan, Ed Sanders & Mick Jagger led to music study for tunes to Wm. Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience: This homage to visionary poet-guru William Blake, occasioned by visit to West Coast to touch a satin bag of body-ashes the late much-loved Neal Cassady, was composed one week on return from police-state shock in Chicago & recorded summer 1969. Chanted OM to Judge and Jury December 1969 Anti-War Conspiracy Trial Chicago; thereafter interrupted by Miami Police on reading poetry exorcising police bureaucracy Prague & Pentagon, rapid Federal Court Mandatory Injunction declared texts constitutionally protected from police censorship. Pallbore funerals late Kerouac & Olson, last few '60's winters spent outside cities learning music, milking cows & goats.
A.G., February, 1970
1971 - Began daily hour sub-vocal mantra heart meditation, Swami Muktananda Paramahamsa teacher; brief journey Bengal Jessore Road Calcutta to E. Pakistan refugee camps & revisited Benares. Jamming at home & recording studios w/Dylan & Happy Traum learned Blues forms. Kaddish play mounted N.Y. Chelsea Theater. Researched & publicized CIA subsidization Indochinese opium traffic; assembled 16 phono albums Collected Poems Vocalized 1946-71 from decades' tape archives. Completed second album Blake songs.
1972 - Began study Kagyu lineage Tibetan Buddhist meditation; Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche teacher; took Refuge and Boddhisattva vows; extended poetic practice to public improvisation on blues chords with political Dharma themes. Adelaide and Central Australia meeting with Aboriginal song-men, Darwin Land travel with Russian poet Andrei Voznesensky. Jailed with hundreds of peace protesters, Miami Presidential Convention; essays in defense of Tim Leary, Abbie Hoffman, John Lennon, etc., from Federal Narcotics Bureau entrapment, as member of P.E.N. Freedom to Read Committee.
1973 - Poetry International London & Rotterdam; meetings with Basil Bunting & Hugh MacDiarmid, tour Scotland/Inner Hebrides. Taught poetics Naropa Seminary; all Autumn retreat Buddhist study including month's 10-hour daily sitting practice.
1974 - Inducted member American Academy of Arts and Letters. National Book Award for Fall of America; apprenticed rough carpentry wooden cottage neighboring Gary Snyder's Sierra land; with Anne Waldman founded Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, Naropa Institute, Boulder Colorado, co-director teaching subsequent summers.
1975 - Poetics school solidified; poet-percussionist on Bob Dylan's Rolling Thunder Review tour; First Blues with lead sheet music notation published.
1976 - Reading Academie Der Kunste, Berlin with Wm. Burroughs; First Blues recordings produced by John Hammond Sr.; several months fall seminary retreat with Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche.
1977 - Read through Blake's entire works, wrote "Contest of Bards," narrated TVTV-N.E.T. film Kaddish, presented poetry/music Nightclub Troubadour L.A. under Buddhist auspices, thereafter N.Y. Other End & Boston Passim folk clubs. Journals Early '50's, Early '60's, Grove Press, N.Y. ed. Gordon Ball. Read with Robert Lowell St. Mark's Poetry Project N.Y.; taught Blake's Urizen Naropa Institute spring, summer discoursed on "Literary History Beat Generation 1940's." Attended Univ. of Cal. Santa Cruz L.S.D. Conference with Dr. Albert Hoffman, visited Kuai.
1978 - Mind Breaths, Poems 1972-77, City Lights, S.F. As Ever: Correspondence A.G. & Neal Cassady 1948-68, Creative Arts, Berkeley; Poems All Over the Place, Cherry Valley Ed., N.Y.; Mostly Sitting Haiku, From Here Press, Paterson, N.J. Naropa Summer Discourse on "Meditation & Poetics"; composed music for Blake's Tyger to trochaic heart-beat meters; acted "the Father," danced, sang Blake & visited Kerouac's grave with Dylan in Renaldo & Clara film. Composed "Plutonian Ode" and arrested twice at Rocky Flats Colo. nuclear facility with Orlovsky & Daniel Ellsberg practicing sitting meditation on railroad tracks blocking train bearing Plutonium/"fissile materials": conviction appealed. Month's fall meditation retreat at Bedrock Mortar Hermitage in California Sierras.
1979 - Taught Blake's Lambeth Prophetic books to Four Zoas at Naropa and poetry workshop at Brooklyn College, Spring: Video film with Alan Kaprow by Nam June Paik; attended gay rights mass meet Washington Monument; several European tours accompanying Corso, Orlovsky and Living Theater with Steven Taylor musician, visited Blake's Cottage Felpham, read and sang at Oxford, Heidelberg, Tübingen and International Poetry convocations Cambridge, Rotterdam and Amsterdam, Paris, Genoa, Rome.
1980 - Composed on the Tongue (Literary Conversations 1967-77) Don Allen, Grey Fox Press, Bolinas. Winter, spring. summer teaching Basic Poetics at Naropa Institute. Gay Sunshine Press edition of Straight Hearts Delight, 25 years' letters and poems done with Peter Orlovsky. National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and New York State Arts Council Grants; Rome International Poetry Festival, fall trip to Yugoslavia, Hungary poetry readings and Rock 'n Roll movie concerts, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Holland tour. Gate song disc produced by Loft Munich. "Capitol Air," New Wave lyric composed on Frankfurt-New York plane December.
1981 - Recorded "Capitol Air" Z.B.S. Studios, for John Hammond Records; Naropa Spring Discourse, "Literary History Beat Generation 1950-53"; Summer Discourse "Twentieth Century International Heroic Expansive Poetics: An Anthology." Mexico City International Poetry Conference with Voznesensky, Borges, Grass, Merwin, Paz, Popa; Kaddish play Toronto; Readings and Singing Piazza della Signoria, Florence & San Carlo Opera House, Naples with Amiri Baraka; attended Dharma Art Festival S.F. & sang with The Job New Wave Band; Columbia Univ. MacMillan Theater 25th Anniversary Howl reading; lectured with Wm. S. Burroughs at Institute for Policy Studies, D.C.; recorded Birdbrain with Gluons Denver New Wave band; prepared MSS. Plutonian Ode: Poems 1977-80 for City Lights; MLA convention discourse on "Journals." Poetry Reading N.Y. YMCA with Jim Carroll. First Blues recorded 1974 in Chelsea Hotel by Harry Smith issued by Folkways. Recorded on Combat Rock album and sang live with Clash at Bond's rock club.
1982 - Attended Poetry Festival Managua, composed "Declaration of 3" with Ernesto Cardinal & Yevtuchenko requesting non-interference in Nicaraguan evolution; completed "Unamerican Activities," P.E.N. Club report on FBI harassment, Underground Press '60's - '70's published by City Lights; recorded two rock songs with Bob Dylan Santa Monica. Continued "Literary History Beat Generation" Spring Discourse Naropa Institute, where collaborated 5 Poem-Paint canvases with Karel Appel; sang Capital Air with various New Wave bands including Still Life Denver, Black Hole Milwaukee & National TV Dave Letterman Broadcast. Hosted Naropa on the Road 25th Anniversary National Celebration with Burroughs, Corso, Orlovsky, Creeley, Ferlinghetti, McClure, Di Prima, Kesey, Berrigan, Carl Solomon, Ray Bremser, Jack Micheline, Robert Frank, Herbert Huncke, Dave Amram, Anne Waldman, Abbie Hoffman, Timothy Leary, Jan Kerouac, and others; Taos anti-nuke readings with Ram Dass. Mexican Tarahumara Sierras train trip with Corso and Orlovsky; visited Maezumi & Eido Roshi LA & NY; participated first meeting P.R.C. Peking Writers' Union Delegation at U.C.L.A. with Vonnegut, Arthur Miller and Gary Snyder; Naropa Fall Discourse, "Beat Literary History, 1957-60"; Plutonian Ode awarded L.A. Times Poetry book prize; December Paris U.N.E.S.C.O. "War Against War" International Poetry reading with Voznesensky and friends; began tour Northern Europe and Scandinavia.
1983 - Completed Copenhagen Stockholm Oslo Helsinki, East and West German tours, video record Back to Wuppertal. Residence Naropa Institute, Boulder, Colorado; William Carlos Williams Centennial Conferences, National Poetry Foundation, University of Maine, Orono, & Rutherford, New Jersey. Visits with Berenice Abbot, Maine & New York. Karme Chöling seminar Dharma & Poetics; Double album, First Blues (1971-1981) issued by John Hammond Records, (o.p. 1986). Poetry in Motion filmed; workshop Meditation and Poetics, Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, D.C. Following ten-year co-directorship, now emeritus Naropa Kerouac Poetics School.
1984 - New Year's Day sang Do the Meditation Rock with Peter Orlovsky & Steven Taylor in Nam June Paik's Good Morning Mr. Orwell Satellite TV performance with Cage, Cunningham, & Laurie Anderson. One World Poetry Brussels visit; Liverpool; Poetry Reunion Albert Hall, London, with Basil Bunting, Tom Pickard, Gregory Corso. White Shroud text New York Times Magazine, also Basel edition illustrated by Francesco Clemente. Awards Committee, American Academy of Arts and Letters; Freedom to Write Committee, P.E.N. Club. Teaching collaboration, poetry music video with Elvin Jones and Robert Frank, Florida Atlantic Center for Arts; 30 years' photograph archives indexed & new printed, advised by Robert Frank. Readings with Nicanor Parra; Father Death poetry video, Out There Prod. American Academy Arts and Letters China delegation with Gary Snyder, Francine du Plessix Grey, Harrison Salisbury; Beijing encounter with Liu Binyan and poet Bai Dao; then two month China travel teaching poetry--readings Foreign Language Institute, School for Foreign Languages, Beijing, Canton, Baoding Hebei, Shanghai Fudan U., Suchow & Kunming after Yangtze three Gorges River trip. Harper & Row, Collected Poems, 1947-1980 .
1985 - First photographic exhibits "Hideous Human Angels" at Holly Solomon NYC & "Memory Gardens," Middendorf Gallery, Washington. Pound Conference with Robert Creeley, Olga Rudge and Hugh Kenner at National Poetry Foundation, Maine, and Berenice Abbot visit with Creeley; Yiddish Poetry Conference with Zalman Schachter and Stanley Kunitz, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Philadelphia; readings Vancouver and London; "Sacramental Snapshots," discourse with photographs, Aperture #101; other photos Vanity Fair, People Magazine. "One World Poetry" Conference, summer Naropa Institute, Southhampton Gay Rights Benefit, Willem De Kooning visit, sat Alex Katz portraits. Harry Smith painter, filmmaker, sound archivist and occult bibliophile, roommate for bulk of year. Interview with China poems "Reading Baijuyi" U.P.I. newsfeature wireserviced. First delegation U.S.-Soviet Writers Meet Vilnius Minsk Leningrad Moscow with Gass, Gaddis, Miller, Cousins, Auchincloss; visits with Bela Achmadulina, and poets S. Kushner, Y. Rein. Visa denied then granted for solitary visit Tibilisi encounter with filmmaker S. Parajanov; Moscow performance A. Kozloff birthday jazz concert & poetry reading Lomonosov U., Yevtuchenko & Sergiev translators. Chinese Howl published Hefei, P.R.C. Poetry Press.
1986 - Drafted controversial widely-endorsed delegates' statement against American intervention in Nicaragua with Arthur Miller & Gunther Grass for P.E.N. International Conference NYC; Vice President, American chapter. Second visit Ruben Dario Poetry Festival, Nicaragua, meetings with poets Jose Coronel Urtecho, Pablo A. Cuadra, Ernesto Cardinal, Carlos Martinez Rivas. Host India Poetry Festival, MOMA; Harvard Advocate AIDS Benefit. Airplane Blues and Blake's Nurses Song recorded Paris Records, Dallas. Group photo show Forum Stadtpark, Graz; Inaugural Program Naropa Halifax Meditation-poetics seminar. Sixtieth Birthday Festschrift, Best Minds A Tribute to Allen Ginsberg, edited Bill Morgan & Bob Rosenthal, contributors Burroughs, Cage, Creeley, Genet, etc. Forward to John Wieners Selected Poems: 1958-1984, Black Sparrow Press. Middleurope visit, recorded Poetry Rock L.P., Hobo Blues Band, Budapest; Golden Wreath prize, Evenings of Poetry, Struga, Yugoslavia; Krakow & Warsaw Solidarity readings. Poetry Society of America Gold Medal Award; appointment Distinguished Professor, Brooklyn College, XX Century Expansive Heroic Verse seminar. Accreditation Naropa Institute by Western College Association; Summer poetics program with Creeley, Burroughs, et al; White Shroud string quartet conducted by Steven Taylor. White Shroud Poems 1980-85 published, Harper & Row; also edition Howl Annotated w/facsimile manuscript. Howl 30th Anniversary panel & gala reading MLA Convention, New York. WNYC- Moscow Radio hook-up chainpoem conversation with Bela Achmadulina, year end.
1987 - Photograph exhibits Books & Books Miami; Dallas Museum of Art; Watari Gallery Tokyo; Arhus Denmark; Lawrence Kansas; Graz Austria. Brooklyn College spring discourse Literary History of Beat Generation, tandem reading series with H. Huncke, R. Creeley, P. Whalen, Ray Bremser, Carl Solomon, P. Orlovsky, M. McClure, W.S. Burroughs. Etching collaboration F. Clemente "Improvisation in Beijing"; premiere W.C. Williams film portrait w/A.G. commentary. Spring Seminars Naropa Boulder & Halifax, last visit the late Vidyadhara, Chögyam Trungpa in hospital; encounters & readings N.Y. with Bitov, Akhmadulina, Yevtuchenko, Vosnesensky, Nicanor Parra. NEA Creative Writing Fellowship Grant; Wallace Stevens Award Timothy Dwight College Yale visit w/Vosnesensky. Mississippi Delta trip Oxford "Ole Miss" Southern Folklore Center Blues Archive & Clarksdale with Harry Smith, thence Jackson & Mobile Alabama. Twentieth Anniversary St. Mark's Poetry Project, reading and panels with Robert Creeley, K. Koch, A. Waldman, E. Sanders, J. Rothenberg. Modern Language Association of America honorary membership; summer discourse: Objectivist poetics, Naropa Institute, 2130 Arapaho, Boulder, CO 80302. Lion For Real spoken Poetry/Music Album recorded, Hal Willner Producer. Attended Kalapa Assembly at Rocky Mt. Dharma Center; Howl reading at Burroughs' River City Reunion , Lawrence, Kansas; attended weeklong Family Service & Therapy Program, Hazelden Hospital, Minneapolis. Francophone Kerouac Convention, Quebec. Addressed Buddhist Psychotherapy Conference, N.Y.; organized consortium P.E.N. American Center, A.C.L.U. with Pacifica Radio to oppose F.C.C. censorship of arts broadcasting.
1988-- Israel readings, with Natan Zach at Tel Aviv Haifa Universities & Jerusalem Cinemathique, Meeting with Palestinian moderates Mubarak Awad & Hanna Senoria, addressed 60,000 Peace Now Rally, taught Camera Obscura School "Photographic Poetics" with Robert Frank. Organized P.E.N. American Center protest Israeli censorship of minority Palestinian literature & media. Collaboration with Philip Glass "Wichita Vortex Sutra", Lincoln Center premiere. Eye and Ear Theater Kaddish play revival, music Steven Taylor, sets Eric Fischl. Hamburg State Opera House "Cosmopolitan Greetings", director Robert Wilson, music George Gruntz, opera libretto Allen Ginsberg. Japan Tour: readings Tokyo with Kazuko Shiraishi, American Literature Society of Japan, Osaka Anti-Nuke Rally, Seika & Kyoto Universities with Nanao Sakaki to protect Okinawan Shiraho Blue Coral Reef. Reunion with Georgian film director Sergei Parajanoff, N.Y. Readings: Museum of Modern Art with Bei Dao, Gong Liu "Poets from the People's Republic of China"; Home Aid Benefit with Ram Das & rock/movie stars, N.Y. Cathedral St. John the Divine 6,000 congregation; Smithsonian Institute; new Student Action Union, Rutgers; with Burroughs Marquette U.; Kerouac Commemorative Park, Lowell; S.F. Jewish Community Center; U.C. Davis with Gary Snyder; New Mexico Sanctuary Defense Committee Benefit. Olson Lectures, S.U.N.Y. Buffalo; Zen Mountain Monastery N.Y. Seminar "Snapshot Poetics"; Orono National Poetry Foundation, discourse "Romantic Poets & the Absolute"; Conference Barnard College reunion with translators Andrei Sergeiev, Fernanda Pivano, Carl Weissner. Photo shows: Tokyo, Krakow, Warsaw, and Stadttheater, Tübingen, Germany; also Whistler House Lowell, Fogg Museum Cambridge; Vision Gallery Boston; Tilton Gallery New York.
1989 -- Keynote poetry reading with Fugs rock group Associated Writing Programs' Convention, Philadelphia; Various High School and college poetry readings Utah, Amherst, Albion, Duke, Bates, etc. Fundraising readings inaugurating Albert Hoffman Memorial Library Los Angeles, other various benefits: NYC Homesteaders, Squatters, Hanuman Books, WNYC, Gay Pride rallies, AIDS Prevention, Convention, St. Mark's Bookshop, Abbie Hoffman Foundation celebrations New York & Pennsylvania, PEN Club Salman Rushdie event, Stalin Victims Memorial, Gelek Rinpoche's Jewel Heart with Philip Glass and Naropa dharma centers. Co -Instructor Brooklyn College course: African American Poetic Genius Ma Rainey to Gwendolyn Brooks with Prof. Marie Buncomb, hosting teacher poets Quincey Troupe, David Henderson, Jayne Cortez, Lorenzo Thomas, June Jordan, Audrey Lorde, Alice Childress, Sonia Sanchez, Michael Harper and Gwendolyn Brooks. Contemplative poetics: "Mind Forms / Poetic Forms" discourses Boulder & Canada Naropa, Karma Chöling Meditation Centers. Assisted CCNY Langston Hughes Award presentation to Amiri Baraka; Paris Review interview and poetry / music performances with Baraka at New York 92nd St. WMHA and Village Gate. Also performances with False Prophets punk band Pyramid Club & Continental Divide New York; chaired Alumni Day Brooklyn College with Tuli Kupferberg, Carl Solomon, and Jackson Maclow; hosted Poets & Writers fundraiser New York; Poetry Project Spring Symposium with Majorie Perloff, Hugh Kenner; California Harmonium Mundi Conference with Dalai Lama; Vancouver reading with Gregory Corso; San Francisco National Poetry Association Week Award for Distinguished Service to poetry art; Knitting Factory Kerouac Mexico City Blues marathon; Eye and Ear Company revival Kaddish Rapp Theater New York. Photo exhibitions in Los Angeles, Chicago, Austria, Poland and Germany. Reality Sandwiches, Nishen/Germany (Photography Book). The Lion For Real Record Cassette & CD Great Jones / Island Records produced Hal Willner. Biography: Ginsberg, Barry Miles Simon & Schuster. Won Federal DC Court Appeal against FCC all broadcast day ban on "indecent' language, chilling anthologized poetry off air. Manhattan Borough President Dinkens' award for Arts Excellence 1989.
1990 -- Keynote speaker, Gay & Lesbian Writers Conference, San Francisco; Lecture/Performance - Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience, acc. by Steven Taylor, St Marks Poetry Project, New York; Lecture, "Photography & Poetics", School of the Arts, Rutgers University; Host, PEN Gala Dinner as Vice President of the American Pen Center, New York; Speaker, Earth Day Rally, Philadelphia; First return to Prague since 1965, received by Mayor Koran & President Havel. Recrowned King of May after 25 years. Concert, President Havel in attendance. Lectures on American Poetry, Charles and Olomuc Universities, Czechoslovakia; Interview, Lewis Hyde, Radio Program Series, Poetry Magazine, Chicago; Premiere Hydrogen Jukebox Opera with Philip Glass, Spoleto Festivals, Charleston, South Carolina & Spoleto, Italy; Readings, Royal Festival Hall, London & Centre George Pompidou, Paris; Co-Director Emeritus, The Naropa Institute Summer Poetics Program, Boulder, Colorado; American delegate, 12th World Congress of Poets, Seoul, South Korea; Lecture, Censored Writings, Boston Museum of Fine Art; Inauguration of traveling photo show, FNAC Galerie, France; Lecture, Chemical Substances & Poetics, Pharmacy School, SUNY, Albany; Reading, National Academy of Sciences, for Junior Academy members, New York; Lifetime Achievement Award, Before Columbus Foundation, Miami, Florida.
1991 -- Week-Long Resident Lecturer, Virginia Military Institute, Lexington, Virginia; Lecture, "Performance" with Gary Snyder, Pitzer College, Claremont, CA; Taught Master Class at Poetry Project Symposium, NYC; Public talk "Shambhala Poetics in the Western Tradition - Working with Spontaneous Poetry", Shambhala Training Center, NYC; Master Class at the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association, Long Island, NY; Symposium on Tiananmen Square with Feng Lizhi, New York Academy of Sciences, NY; Keynote Speaker, Buddhist Psychology Conference, Karma Triyana Monastery, Woodstock, NY; Symposium with Lewis Hyde, "Art & Politics", Kenyon College, OH; Keynote Lecture, Great Falls Preservation and Development Corporation 200th Anniversary, Paterson, New Jersey; MLA Special Session on "Kaddish", chair Gordon Ball with Helen Vendler, San Francisco, CA; Harriet Monroe Poetry Award, University of Chicago, IL; Photo Book: Allen Ginsberg Photographs, Twelvetrees Press, Santa Monica; Reading Jack Kerouac's Dharma Bums & Jacob Rabinowitz's Translations of Catullus, Spring Audio Cassettes, New York.
1992 -- Lecture/Demonstration International Center for Photography, NY; William Carlos Williams Conference, "Paterson: The Poem and the City", Great Falls Preservation and Development Corporation, Paterson, NJ; Jewel Heart Benefit Readings with Anne Waldman & Gelek Rinpoche, Netherlands; Week Residence National Poetry Foundation, University of Maine, ME; Three lectures on Poetics: Santa Monica Writers Conference with Annie Dillard; Lectures/Addresses Walt Whitman Centenary Celebrations: Brooklyn College, CUNY Graduate Center with Galway Kinnell, SUNY, Purchase, Teachers & Writers at St Marks Poetry Project with Kenneth Koch, St John Divine Cathedral with Lucille Clifton & Galway Kinnell, Brooklyn Historical Society, Manhattanville College, The Garrison Keilor Show with Robert Bly, Charly Rose PBS with Kinnell & Sharon Olds; "Chevalier de l'Ordre des Artes et des Lettres" presented by Jacques Lang, French Minister of Culture, Paris; Elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Boston, MA; "Exorcising Burroughs": colloquy with William Burroughs, London Observer Sunday Magazine; Individual volumes of poetry published in China, Czechoslovakia & Bulgaria; Indian Journals, paperback, Viking Penguin, India; Essay; "Whitman's Influence: A Mountain Too Vast To Be Seen", The Teachers & Writers Guide to Walt Whitman, New York; Preface, Kerouac's Pomes All Sizes, City Lights, San Francisco; Louis Ginsberg, Collected Poems, Northern Lights, Orono, Maine; Essay: "Negative Capability: Kerouac's Buddhist Ethic", Tricycle, The Buddhist Review, Fall, 1992; Biography Dharma Lion, Michael Schumacher, St Martin's Press, New York, 1992.
1993 -- National Writer's Voice Project tour of American heartland, Boise, St. Louis, Billings, Phoenix, Lexington. Tibet House benefit with Philip Glass, Laurie Anderson, & chanting Gyuto monks. Jewel Heart Lincoln, Nebraska benefit for Gelek Rinpoche. FAIR Benefit screening Damned in the USA. Performances at McCabes, Santa Monica, and Iron Horse, Amherst. Colleges: Chapman, Stonehill, University of Oklahoma, Earlham College. High School curriculum teaching at Dalton prep school. Collaboration with dancer Cyndi Lee. Readings with Galway Kinnell at St. Marks, David Cope in Grand Rapids. 50th High School Class Reunion at Eastside HS in New Jersey. Jewish-Buddhism conference with Rabbi Zalman Sahachter & Gelek Rinpoche. "Neglected Whitman" Reading with Sam Abrams. John Jay Distinguished Alumnus Award Columbia. Introduced Brooklyn College Rainbow series: Joe Bruchac, Pat Hampl, Andy Clausen, Sharon Olds, Galway Kinnell, Lucille Clifton & Simon Ortiz. Orono, Maine conference on 30's poets. July at Naropa Institute for annual Writing program, August Jewel Heart Retreat with Gelek Rinpoche. Four month European tour in the Fall during Brooklyn College Sabbatical: Ten days teaching with Anne Waldman at Vienna Poetry School, travel to Budapest; Belgrade; Bydgoszcz, Krakow, Lodz, & Warsaw in Poland; Cheltenham Festival England. First visit to Ireland reading in Dublin & Belfast, TV collaboration with Bono at U-2 studio, Dublin; Readings in Norway, Munich, with premières of Jerry Aronson's film The Life and Times of Allen Ginsberg in Paris, Berlin, Prague, Barcelona, Madrid, Cordoba, Athens. Visited with Alan Ansen in Greece, final stop Tangiers visit with Paul Bowles and revisitation of old room habited with Peter O. & Jack Kerouac (c. 1957 & 1961). Home January for Vajrayogini Buddhist retreat with Gelek Rinpoche, Michigan.
1994 -- Early January Buddhist Retreat, Ann Arbor; Read Howl with Kronos Quartet, at Unterman & Savinar Residence, SF, Jan. 14 and at Carnegie Hall, Jan 20; Visiting Adjunct Prof. NYU, Craft of Poetry Course; Reading, St. Mary's College of Maryland, Jan 28; Benefit Reading for Jewel Heart, Hill Auditorium, Feb 4; Visit with William Burroughs, Lawrence KS, 80th Birthday Celebration; benefit Reading for Tibet House with Philip Glass, Paul Simon, Richie Havens, Natalie Merchant, Spaulding Grey; Reading with Quincy Troupe, Gwen Fowler Museum of Cont. Art, San Diego, Feb 17; Weekend Workshop, Pacifica Graduate Institute, Lambert, CA Feb, 19; Reading UC Santa Barbara, Feb 24; Reading & Weekend Workshop, Zen Mountain Monastery, Mt Trempner, NY, March 11 &12; Reading and talk, Concordia University, Montreal, March 18; Benefit Reading for Coffee House Press, Minneapolis, March 19; Shot poetry video for United States of Poetry, Mark Pellington director, April 16; Reading Columbia Green College, NY April h22; Reading Portland, ME March 29; Panel with Ed Sanders, Bernadette Mayer, David Henderson, Investigative Poetics, Poetry Project Symposium, May 7; Reading and Lecture for NYU Beat Conference May 18-21; Book Tour for Cosmopolitan Greetings Poems sign and read in New York, Hartford, San Diego, Los Angeles, Ventura; San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Seattle, Portland; Harvard Phi Beta Kappa Poet, June 7; Workshop with Gelek Rinpoche, Omega Institute; Naropa Institute, Boulder, CO Lecture and Reading month of July; Lecture Skowhegan School, Skowhegan, ME, Aug 5; Send week with editor Gordon Ball, final edits for Journals Mid Fifties Aug 15; Reading at "The Real Woodstock Festival" with Ed Sanders, Country Joe McDonald, Woodstock; Benefit Reading for Doctors without Borders, Lincoln Ctr, NYC; Buddhist Retreat with Gelek Rinpoche Aug 29; Reading McCabes Guitar Shop, Santa Monica, Sept, 9; Benefit Reading for Albert Hoffman Found., at Living Planet, Longbeach CA, Sept, 10; Reading, Viper Room, Santa Monica, Sept. 12; Benefit Reading for Maitri Hospice, SF; Reading Solo Mio Festival, SF Sept, 19; Reading with Robert Creeley, John Wieners, U Mass Sept 23; Read and roundtable for Annual Kerouac Fest, Lowell, MA Sept 24; Reading with Kamau Braithwaite, New School, Tischman Auditorium, NYC, Oct, 6; Benefit Reading for Black Mountain Museum, Asheville, NC Oct. 13; Benefit Reading and Workshop, Karme Choling, Barnett, VT, Oct. 21; Read and Lecture Swarthmore College, Oct. 31; Lecture and Read Penn University, Oct 1-3; Reading Hot Springs, AK, Oct 5; Reading Kent State, Nov 6; Guest of Nouvel Observateur, Paris for roundtable Nov 22-Dec 2; Read & Sign booktour for Cosmopolitan Greetings London, Dec 3-9;
1995 -- Panel with Carl Rakosi, and Reading Stanford University, Feb 10; Reading Benefit for Jewel Hear, Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor Feb 16; Reading Benefit for Village Vanguard with Ray Bremser, Feb 23; Reading Benefit for Tibet House, Carnegie Hall NY, with Philip Glass, Natalie Merchant, Paul Simon, Edie Brickel, Feb 28, 1995; Benefit Reading with Philip Glass & Gelek Rinpoche for Jewel Heart, Cleveland; Reading, UK Year of Literature & Writing Festival, Swansea, Wales, April 7, 1995; Reading with Andrei Voznesensky, Galway Arts Center, Galway, Ireland, Introduced by U2's Bono, April 1; Panel with Camile Paglia, Leslie Fiedler, Ismael Reed, SUNY Buffalo, April 29-30; Reading Benefit, Halifax Nova Scotia, in conjunction with Tibetan Buddhist Sakyong Enthronement May 19, 1995; Readings at the Knitting Factory, 5 nights successive, Complete Selected Poems 1947-1995 for manuscript, over May 4-11, 1995; Hungarian- Russian documentary on Lower East Side with Gregory Corso, George Condo, Philip Glass, Francesco Clemente, Peter Orlovsky. June 2-4 1995.; Symposium with & Exhibition, with Hiro Yamagata, Venice Biennial, June 9; Reading tribute to Fernanda Pivano, Conegliano, Italy, June 10; Teaching & performance, two weeks at Naropa Institute, Boulder Colorado, July 1-15, 1995; Interview & photography weeklong with William Burroughs, Lawrence, Kansas July 16-22; Reading benefit for Mumia Abu-Jamal with Amiri Baraka, Marc Ribot and other musicians, at The Cooler, NY Aug. 8, 1995; Reading Benefit for ABC No Rio, Rivington St. NY, Aug. 11, 1995; Buddhist Retreat Ann Arbor Michigan, Jewel Heart Center, & performance with Philip Glass Aug. 28-September 6, 1995; Reading with Anne Waldman, Tom Pickard, Alice Notley et al. The Royal Albert Hall, London, October 16, 1995;
1996 -- January: residence L.A., Gemini GEL Lithography press; readings at McCabes Guitar Shop, Santa Monica. Feb 12 -- 27 Eberhard L. Faber Fellow Princeton U., Lectures & Reading; Carnegie Hall performance with Philip Glass, Tibet House benefit; Collaborated with Ornette Coleman Poetry-Jazz telecast, European Canal Plus, Paris; March tour: Paris, Prague, photo show Milan & reading w/Philip Glass in France & Czech Republic; translations of Cosmopolitan Greetings, Paris & Milan; April: Jewel Heart Benefit, with Patti Smith, Ann Arbor; National Portrait Gallery photo show & poetry readings "Rebel Poets & Painters of the 1950's" Wash. DC; May: Publication of Illuminated Poems illustrated by Eric Drooker, Four Walls Eight Windows, NY; recorded The Ballad of the Skeletons with Paul McCartney, Philip Glass, Marc Ribot, Lenny Kaye, Mercury records, released Oct. '96; June-July: Poetry Reading Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, accompanying Whitney traveling Beat Generation exhibit; taught at Naropa Institute; Poetry Reading Los Angeles Count Museum of Art for William Burroughs painting exhibition; residence July L.A., Gemini GEL Lithography press, completed portfolio of 6 images; 10 day residence with William Burroughs, Lawrence, KS to take photos, record interview, edit his essay on "Bureaucracy & drugs;" Aug: Vocalist for "Sunflower Sutra," String Orchestra, music Philip Glass conducted by Yehudi Menhuin, Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Ctr., NY; Sept-Oct: Week's Buddhist Summer study retreat; Publication Selected Poems '47-95' Harper Collins, NY; Music Video Directed by Gus Van Sant Ballad of the Skeletons ; Poetry Reading DeYoung Museum, SF accompanying Whitney traveling Beat Generation exhibit; St. Mark's Church Poetry Project benefit Selected Poems & record party musicale with twelve-musician accompaniment including members of Sonic Youth band produced by Hal Willner; "Beginner's Blake" class, Brooklyn College; Dec. Awarded National Jewish Book Council Lifetime Award; SF Cow Palace 14,000 attendance for Live 105 radio Green Christmas Ball, performed three poems with Ralph Carney & band, in company with Orbital, Lemonheads, Beck et al.; ten day Buddhist Winter study retreat with Gelek Rinpoche, Camp Copneconic, Michigan.
1997 -- Continued Buddhist Winter Study with Gelek Rinpoche; February: Carnegie Hall Tibet House benefit performance with Philip Glass, Michael Stipe, Natalie Merchant, Patti Smith, et al., Short appearance Group Poetry Slam NYU Loeb Center; late February ordered leave of absence from teaching by Dr. due to liver illness. Spring reading dates canceled. Late march enters beth Israel Hospital & soon after diagnosed with teminal liver cancer. April 2 return home from Hospital & begin hospice. April 4 suffered stroke early AM resulting in coma. Dies at home April 5 early AM in presence of close friends & teacher Gelek Rinpoche.
“Rainy night on Union Square, full moon. Want more poems? Wait till I'm dead. August 8, 1990 3:30 AM”
— American Sentences