Allen Cohen



Allen Cohen was the founder and editor of the legendary San Francisco Oracle published from 1966 to 1968. The Oracle preceded both The Berkeley Barb and The Rolling Stone as the "in-the-know" paper of the Haight-Ashbury acid-rock community, but because of the influx of international tourism, the alternative mindset newspaper circulated globally. It became an artistic taste of "the Age of Aquarius," herald of psychedelia world wide, and ecumenical consciousness. Features included articles about Alpert/Leary on the East Coast as well as North Beach writers Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Michael McClure, to name just a few.
Cohen moved to San Francisco in 1963, was one of the first in the San Francisco Bay Area to take LSD during the US government-NASA experiments delving into space-alternative reality probes.
Allen Cohen co-edited a poetry anthology entitled An Eye for an Eye Makes the Whole World Blind: Poets on 9/11, in 2002, after the 9/11 tragedy.
He authored three books of poems
The Reagan Poems, Childbirth is Ecstasy, and The Book of Hats.




of Allen Ginsberg

April 12, 1997

When you first appeared to me
at Brooklyn College 1960
w/ Corso & Whalen and Snyder
reinventing oral poetry,
we were reading Eliot and Pound -
ashes on the page - ideas dying on the page.

You opened up the line,
opened the poem to the world.
It is a struggle with a phantom
then and now for the young
to discern their lives spread out
before them as anything but
"a body etherized upon a table,"
except as the dreary suppression of desire.

Suddenly when you read
there at Brooklyn College,
life became molten,
spirit and matter merged,
feeling flooded
the dry wound of mind,
the soul and the body healed
no longer severed
by centuries of dogma.

A future opened and with bare feet,
naked body and open mind,
I could walk the American earth.

In the Haight Ashbury
when I edited the Oracle,
and helped originate the Human Be-In
you came forth chanting with harmonium
"Om Namo Shivaya"
and danced wildly like Shiva
creating and destroying universes.
You wrote in the Oracle that
America's political need
was orgies in the parks and
naked bacchantes in the forests.
In the Houseboat Summit interview
you asked Leary, "What do you
really mean by drop out?"
Years later we met at
an Italian Restaurant
in North Beach
and you kissed me
and spoke about
the Aboriginal shaman
in Australia who had memorized
Britannicas of information
in verse that their culture
needed to survive
and passed it on orally.

Two years ago I sat with you
at a City Lights signing
while Ann drew you,
and I told you how you
had brought me from
academia at Brooklyn College
to the heart of life.
And now you were teaching there.
You spoke of the spontaneous mind -
first thought, best thought.

When I read of your hepatitis and liver cancer,
I wrote you that I loved you
and that you showed me and the world
that the poem and life must encompass it all,
and that I too had been seized by the dragon
and asked you to not to cease the struggle.
I wanted you so much to live.
But the next morning you were murdered
by your past, by the fire in the liver.

I bear witness before the immortal mirror
how time is checking us out.
Ravaged from the explorations
of the undiscovered mind,
Savaged bodies bent by the raging river.
Bob Kaufman's jazz images flowing
beaten, shocked and traumatized
and time is checking us out.
Tim Leary wanderer through the inner cosmos
kedomized unable to feel the pain
in his body until it was too late,
and time is checking us out.
Ram Dass with his peaceful smile
and high blood pressure
has a stroke and is paralyzed,
and time is checking us out.
Allen Ginsberg, the voice of the bard,
body wounded, the song stilled,
and time is checking us out.

Time must replace its heroes of deep soul,
its explorers, the voices that make us whole.
Somehow the light must pass through time
incandescent, meteoric and passionate
the fire must burn through time.

(c) 1997 Allen Cohen




Herb-Roasted Allen Ginsberg Potatoes

16 small red dharma potatoes [size of a golf ball], washed, but into halves
1 red onion, peeled, william blaked, cut into eighths
4 cloves meditation rock garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons white shroud olive oil
1 teaspoon dried howling rosemary
1 teaspoon dried mind breath thyme
1 teaspoon freshly ground Angkor Wat pepper
salt to taste
1 tablespoon Cassady parsley, chopped

Preheat over to 375 F
Place potatoes and onions in large baking dish in single layer. Add garlic, olive oil, parsley, rosemary, thyme, pepper and salt. Mix well. Bake 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes, or until golden brown and tender. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve.
4 servings.
Source: Don Was



Oracle's Espresso Truffles

Yield: 2 dozen truffles


· 2 sticks unsalted butter
· 3/4 cup sugar
· 3/4 cup espresso coffee
· 8 ounces semisweet chocolate
· 3 whole eggs
· 3 egg yolks


8" cake pan
Truffle scoop (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Adjust rack to center of oven

Melt butter, sugar, coffee, and chocolate in top half of double boiler set in simmering water. Place in mixer, add egg yolks and whole eggs slowly until well blended. Pour into eight-inch cake pan. Place cake pan into water bath and bake 1 hour in a 350 degree oven.

Remove cake pan from oven, and place in the refrigerator to cool. When cooled, use truffle scoop or teaspoon to scoop truffles and roll with hands into 1/2" balls. Chill again until firm. Dip each truffle in melted chocolate of your choice or roll each truffle in cocoa. Chill and serve directly from fridge.


   11 March 2001
What does keep you busy? Here is a new poem you might like for its symbology.


Anatomy of a Dream

In the grand opening salvo of a dream
as I am launched into a new world,
the correct camouflage does not exist.
The emotions reign and reason is smothered.
Subdued but never lost I am flying, journeying.
Found, the dog bone of desire is chewed.

I am you and always have been longing
for the right arc of light,  
the laser of the dream machine,
the source of light.
I cannot acquiesce.
I am rubber and I stretch
returning to my original shape,
morphed, resurrected, revived.
There is no solution
in these insubstantial worlds
except the occlusions of darkness.
Will I find the dawn, the new light?
Will the return be quick and sudden?
Where will I dwell in the meadow
of angelic presence as the light recedes
beneath the Willow and Elm?
In the cavernous shadows?
Or shall I never dwell
in that land again?

I cannot betray you
without destroying my dream.
How can I continue
the procession to the gate,
the beginning, the melting core,
the canvas unstretched,
the cannon demolished
the canyon wall unclimbed,
the cerebellum unused?
Yet I move forward
into a blind future
of dandelions,
a laughing sensation,
a joke of a flower,
so simple, so central, so basic.

-Allen Cohen




Allen Ginsberg [Irwin Allen Ginsberg] born June 3, 1926, between WWI and WWII, in Newark NJ.
Sun 11° Gemini 54' square his Moon 10° Pisces 43' perhaps an aggitation persistent enough to create some hurdles with one or both parents. His mother was affected by epileptic seizures. The disrupted nervous system sounds suspiciously like an aspect that would be negative to toxic Mercury and/or Uranus, due to transits or progressions within the star chart. But if the symptoms do not recede within a year or so some major aspect of life is probably transformed due to something that involves emotional and perhaps physical stress. This type of complaint is infused into the atmosphere at home and may alter what would be a 'normal' domestic structuring style.
Ginsberg's Pisces Ascendant 24° Pisces 24' is like an emotional vacuum cleaner, that constantly attracts pain, disorientation, and stress factors in his immediate environment. Many with this ascendant pursue counseling, hypno-therapy, and work within professional fields that require something of a spiritual coach, such as a poet.
Ginsberg's Pisces Asc lines up opposite Kerouac's strong Virgo Asc conjunct Virgo Moon, and may have influenced Ginsberg's assessment of the United States social status during the beat movement in the 50s. After WWII the US went through a strong recovery from the obvious and subtle pressures that grew in the war years. When the war ended the beat movement picked up on the trend that ‘handles’ the aftermath – some say kadish or nigredo - the ashes.

The Aquarian Age was in its inception when Ginsberg penned one of the most important poems of the decade, Howl (1956), published by City Lights Books. Ginsberg, like most of the beats, followed the life of the Buddha. During the 60s counter culture movement Ginsberg appeared at public events, for "happenings" at Golden Gate Park and The Avalon Ballroom, leading crowds in chants of the sacred word "OM". His Midheaven 27° Sagittarius 02' is consistent with respect for the Eastern syllable sound of creation and destruction at a higher octave level. Meditations associated with Sag usually represent the overview of creation, a view of the "material world" from a spiritual point of view. This appreciation for holistic "super-vision" is also supported by his 9 Destiny Number, the vibration most associated with fellowship and humanitarian concern.

Allen Ginsberg was strongly influenced by the ruling planet of Aquarius, Uranus, a fascinating, contrary, and innovative energy that co-rules animation of the physical vehicle. Aquarius and Uranus are both known for the element of suprise, the love of make-over and colouring outside the lines. Ginsberg shared a powerful Uranian aspect with the following people, many known for their remarkable contributions to the improvement of our quality of life:

Nat King Cole, Salvador Dali, James Dean, Chris Evans, Bill Gates, Mel Gibson, Audrey Hepburn, Scarlett Johansson, Tommy Lee Jones, Christopher Lambert, John Lennon, George Lucas, Sophie Marceau, David Morse, Mother Teresa, Eddie Murphy, Isaac Newton, Conan O'Brien, Heather O'Rourke, Natalie Portman, Auguste Renoir, Sally Ride, Jean-Paul Sartre, Bruce Springsteen, Sharon Stone, Naomi Watts, Mary Wilson, Nancy Wilson, Kate Winslet, and Dweezil Zappa.




Allen Cohen
biography and poem

Mimi Farina, Bread & Roses - Favorite Heartwarmers

Allen Ginsberg and his father Louis Ginsberg
give a noontime reading on the campus of San Francisco State University. Allen Ginsberg reads "Mantra Song," "Flying Elegy for Alan Watts," "Exorcism"
Allen Ginsberg: May 9, 1974
48 minutes, VHS, $25.00

Rudolph Schaeffer
The Need for Beauty

The Unnumbered Card
with notes for Tarot study
re: the clown prince theory

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