Peter Orlovsky (1933-2010) From the Diaries 1960

Yes, Peter Orlovsky, as he walked down the lower Third Avenue, gesticulating with his arms freely, and with his blue-striped farmer’s shirt, in a large step, and singing, just to himself, somewhere deep in himself, a very high high note, a voice that seemed to be coming from some very strange inner voice, very personal, very fragile. Yes, Peter Orlovsky, not seeing anything, just a sound, a sort of monotonous trance sound, but also very relaxed, completely relaxed and happy and careless, a carelessness punctuated, underlined only by his gesticulating arms, his free, happy, exuberant stride, as if he has been walking like this many thousands of miles, perhaps all the way from Mexico City, or Frisco, and, or perhaps, all the way from Chicago and is now on his way to somewhere downtown, and all the way to the South Pole, and—and or; a sort of mystical walker with his mystical weird song and the blue-striped shirt, and a child’s smile on his face—yes, Peter Orlovsky, as he walked that day, early in June, along the Third Avenue, and down, not seeing me, although we almost bumped into each other—not seeing anything, just singing, at the very top of his voice, very thin, mysterious voice and weird—a traveler from inner regions, and, strangely, the entire street, and the rush of the people, the open bar doors seemed to suddenly for a moment acquire, for one short moment, an importance, a brief intensity of life—a certain meaning, a certain being, their emptiness and their drabness and their sadness suddenly, for a brief moment, seemed to acquire a certain mystical perspective, the perspective of this strange traveler who seemed to cast upon it all, upon this street something very sublimely real—as he strolled by, as he walked thus, in his long free stride, gesticulating with his arms, as he walked that summer day down the Third Avenue, Peter Orlovsky.


Jonas Mekas

JONAS MEKAS has often been called "the godfather of American avant-garde cinema."


JUL-AUG 2010

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