Howl, Kaddish and Other Poems (Penguin Modern Classics)
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Allen Ginsberg was the bard of the beat generation, and "Howl, Kaddish and Other Poems" is a collection of his finest work published in "Penguin Modern Classics", including "Howl", whose vindication at an obscenity trial was a watershed moment in twentieth-century history. 'I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked' Beat movement icon and visionary poet, Allen Ginsberg broke boundaries with his fearless, pyrotechnic verse. This new collection brings together the famous poems that made his name as a defining figure of the counterculture. They include the apocalyptic "Howl", which became the subject of an obscenity trial when it was first published in 1956; the moving lament for his dead mother, 'Kaddish'; the searing indictment of his homeland, 'America'; and the confessional 'Mescaline'. Dark, ecstatic and rhapsodic, they show why Ginsberg was one of the most influential poets of the twentieth century. Allen Ginsberg (1926-97) was an American poet, best known for the poem "Howl" (1956), celebrating his friends of the Beat Generation and attacking what he saw as the destructive forces of materialism and conformity in the United States at the time. He was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters, was awarded the medal of Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Minister of Culture, won the National Book Award for "The Fall of America" and was a co-founder of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at the Naropa Institute, the first accredited Buddhist college in the Western world. If you enjoyed "Howl, Kaddish and Other Poems", you might like Jack Kerouac's "On the Road", also available in "Penguin Modern Classics". "The poem that defined a generation". ("Guardian" on "Howl"). "He avoids nothing but experiences it to the hilt". (William Carlos Williams).
long wards of her universe only to have known the weird ideas of Hitler at the door, the wires in her head, the three big sticks rammed down her back, the voices in the ceiling shrieking out her ugly early lays for 30 years, only to have seen the time-jumps, memory lapse, the crash of wars, the roar and silence of a vast electric shock, only to have seen her painting crude pictures of Elevateds running over the rooftops of the Bronx her brothers dead in Riverside or Russia, her lone in Long
bandage unrolled and the skull left still on a bed outstretched pudgy fingers the mystery and ego gone a bell tolls in the steeple down the street birds warble in the chestnut trees Famille Bremont sleeps nearby Christ hangs big chested and sexy in their tomb my cigarette smokes in my lap and fills the page with smoke and flames an ant runs over my corduroy sleeve the tree I lean on grows slowly bushes and branches upstarting through the tombs one silky spiderweb gleaming on granite I am
me to slimy worms of pure sensate transcendency I’m still alive, croak my voice with uglier than reality, a psychic tomato speaking Thy million mouths, Myriad-tongued my Soul, Monster or Angel, Lover that comes to fuck me forever—white gown on the Eyeless Squid— Asshole of the Universe into which I disappear—Elastic Hand that spoke to Crane—Music that passes into the phonograph of years from another Millennium—Ear of the buildings of NY— That which I believe—have seen—seek endlessly in leaf
ancient sawdust— —I rushed up enchanted—it was my first sunflower, memories of Blake—my visions—Harlem and Hells of the Eastern rivers, bridges clanking Joes Greasy Sandwiches, dead baby carriages, black treadless tires forgotten and unretreaded, the poem of the riverbank, condoms & pots, steel knives, nothing stainless, only the dank muck and the razor-sharp artifacts passing into the past— and the gray Sunflower poised against the sunset, crackly bleak and dusty with the smut and smog and
gape of bad mouth came first—to you—and were you prepared? To go where? In that Dark—that—in that God? a radiance? A Lord in the Void? Like an eye in the black cloud in a dream? Adonoi at last, with you? Beyond my remembrance! Incapable to guess! Not merely the yellow skull in the grave, or a box of worm dust, and a stained ribbon—Deathshead with Halo? can you believe it? Is it only the sun that shines once for the mind, only the flash of existence, than none ever was? Nothing beyond what we