Laughing Gas IV | Allen Ginsberg, 1955-56

Laughing Gas IV | Allen Ginsberg, 1955-56
Allen Ginsberg resting in bed, 1955

to Gary Snyder 

The red tin begging cup you gave me,

I lost it but its contents are undisturbed.


Back in the same old black hole
where Possibility closes the
last door

and the Great Void remains

… a glass

in the dust reflecting the sun,
fragment of a bottle
that never knew it existed

. . . under a tree
that sleeps all winter
till it grows its eyes
in May heat

and flowers upward with a thousand
green sensations
dies, and forgets itself in Snow

. . . Phantom in Phantom

If we didn’t exist, God
would have to create this

to leave no room for complaint
by any of the birds & bees
who might have missed their
chance (to be)

Fate tells big lies.

. . . And the big kind Dreamer
is on the nod again
God sleeps!

He’s in for a big surprise
one of his dreams is going to come true
He’ll get the answer too
He’ll get the answer too

Just a flash in the cosmic pan
— -just an instant when there
might have been a light
had there been any pan
to reflect it —

— we can lie on the bed and imagine
ourselves away —

I’m afraid to stop breathing —
first the pain in the

suffocation, then
the Death.

Allen Ginsberg, Howl, Before & After, 
San Francisco Bay Area, 1955-56

Walter Lehrman, Gary Snyder, Mill Valley, May 1956

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