While I often shared a good howl with my Siberian Huskies (and will today given the least opportunity) just seeing the word “howl” drives my mind right back to Allen Ginsberg. I read Howl in high school and thought it was both incomprehensible and edgy (they kind of go together, right? Especially when you’re 16?) but as I was already (imagine) superlatively cool I stood behind its incomprehensibility, Jewishness and sexuality. Dammit.
I didn’t even know if I liked the poem. But is there a more beautiful image anywhere than “…angel-headed hipsters” or “who wept at the romance of the streets with their pushcarts full of onions and bad music.” Seriously. And then?
“who journeyed to Denver, who died in Denver, who came back to Denver & waited in vain, who watched over Denver & brooded & loned in Denver and finally went away to find out the Time, & now Denver is lonesome for her heroes…”
If Denver is indeed lonely for her heroes, she hasn’t told me.
But I like Howl now. I love it now. Back then I preferred “America” and “Supermarket in California” but today? Howl, definitely, the first part, anyway. Beautiful. Still, I have to stand by this…
America I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing.
America two dollars and twentyseven cents January 17, 1956.
When can I go into the supermarket and buy what I need with my good looks?
America after all it is you and I who are perfect not the next world.
P.S. In plumbing news, the public works guy from the city called me back yesterday and I learned I have three directions.
- I can just leave it like it is and clean it out whenever, possibly asking my neighbors to pitch in.
- I can dig up my pipe, disengage it from the shared pipe and go on with my life with a huge bill but a state of the art sewer line that will last 50 years.
- I can communicate with my neighbors and we can ALL pull out the line and continue to share a line (but state of the art).
For now I’m going with the first option. In spring I may look into the second option, but it will be at least $3500 for the line alone, then more for the fence and the concrete. I think this merits more thought.