Beat Poets

Overview

This rousing anthology features the work of more than twenty-five writers from the great twentieth-century countercultural literary movement. Writing with an audacious swagger and an iconoclastic zeal, and declaiming their verse with dramatic flourish in smoke-filled cafés, the Beats gave birth to a literature of previously unimaginable expressive range.

The defining work of Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac provides the foundation for this collection, which also features the ...

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Overview

This rousing anthology features the work of more than twenty-five writers from the great twentieth-century countercultural literary movement. Writing with an audacious swagger and an iconoclastic zeal, and declaiming their verse with dramatic flourish in smoke-filled cafés, the Beats gave birth to a literature of previously unimaginable expressive range.

The defining work of Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac provides the foundation for this collection, which also features the improvisational verse of such Beat legends as Gregory Corso, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Gary Snyder, and Michael McClure and the work of such women writers as Diane DiPrima and Denise Levertov. LeRoi Jones’s plaintive “Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note” and Bob Kaufman’s stirring “Abomunist Manifesto” appear here alongside statements on poetics and the alternately incendiary and earnest correspondence of Beat Generation writers.

Visceral and powerful, infused with an unmediated spiritual and social awareness, this is a rich and varied tribute and, in the populist spirit of the Beats, a vital addition to the libraries of readers everywhere.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375413322
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 7/9/2002
  • Series: Pocket Poets Series
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 775,086
  • Product dimensions: 4.33 (w) x 6.49 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Carmela Ciuraru

Carmela Ciuraru is the editor of the anthology First Loves: Poets Introduce the Essential Poems That Captivated and Inspired Them, and the former editor of the Journal of the Poetry Society of America. A graduate of Columbia University's School of Journalism, she lives in New York City.

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Table of Contents

Foreword

RAY BREMSER (1934–98)
From
Poems of Madness (“City Madness”)

GREGORY CORSO (1930–2001)
Hello
From Ode to Coit Tower
From Transformation & Escape
I Am 25
Poets Hitchhiking on the Highway
Away One Year
After Reading “In the Clearing”
Writ on the Eve of My 32nd Birthday
Second Night in N.Y.C. After 3 Years

ELISE COWEN (1933–62)
“Trust yourself—but not too far”

ROBERT CREELEY (1926– )
Chasing the Bird
The Dishonest Mailmen
I Know a Man
The End
The Hill
The Rain
For Love

DIANE di PRIMA (1934– )
Revolutionary Letter #1
Poem in Praise of My Husband (Taos)
The Quarrel
April Fool Birthday Poem for Grandpa
Poetics

LAWRENCE FERLINGHETTI (1919– )
#9 (“Truth is not the secret of a few”)
#13 (“It was a face which darkness could kill”)
#22 (“crazy to be alive in such a strange world”)
#39 (“A blockage in the bowel”’)

ALLEN GINSBERG (1926–97)
From
Howl
“Back on Times Square, Dreaming of Times Square”
My Alba
Song
Malest Cornifici Tuo Catullo
Tears
From Kaddish
A Supermarket in California
Sunflower Sutra
From America

BARBARA GUEST (1923– )
Parachutes, My Love, Could Carry Us Higher
Sunday Evening

LEROI JONES (Amiri Baraka) (1934– )
Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note
Sex, like desire
War Poem
Political Poem

LENORE KANDEL (1932– )
Enlightenment Poem
Blues for Sister Sally
Junk/Angel

BOB KAUFMAN (1925–86)
Benediction
West Coast Sounds—1956
Fragment
Ginsberg (for Allen)
Abomunist Manifesto

JACK KEROUAC (1922–69)
Mexican Loneliness
How to Meditate
A Sudden Sketch Poem
116
Hymn
From Mexico City Blues

TULI KUPFERBERG (1923– )
“I dreamed of a bum seven foot tall”
“My muse goosed me”

JOANNE KYGER (1934– )
“It is lonely”
“My father died this spring”
May 29
“It’s a great day”

PHILIP LAMANTIA (1927– )
From
Hypodermic Light
High
“Man is in pain”

DENISE LEVERTOV (1923–97)
The Gypsy’s Window
The Flight
The Marriage
The Marriage (II)
Poem from Manhattan

JOANNA McCLURE (1930– )
A Vacancy

MICHAEL McCLURE (1932– )
The Flowers of Politics (I)
The Flowers of Politics (II)
Mad Sonnet 13

DAVID MELTZER (1937– )
From the Untitled Epic Poem
6th Raga: For Bob Alexander
15th Raga: For Bela Lugosi

HAROLD NORSE (1916– )
Picasso Visits Braque
I Would Not Recommend Love
“I Have Always Liked George Gershwin More than Ernest Hemingway”
I Have Seen the Light and It Is My Mind
Hotel Nirvana

FRANK O’HARA (1926–66)
Personal Poem
Autobiographia Literaria
Today
My Heart
Avenue A
Now That I Am in Madrid and Can Think
Having a Coke With You

PETER ORLOVSKY (1933– )
Peter’s Jealous of Allen
“Writing poems is a Saintly thing”
Some One Liked Me When I Was Twelve
Collaboration: Letter to Charlie Chaplin

MARIE PONSOT (1921– )
Take My Disproportionate Desire
Matins & Lauds
Communion of Saints: The Poor Bastard Under the Bridge
Easter Saturday, NY, NY
Rockefeller the Center

GARY SNYDER (1930– )
Migration of Birds
A Sinecure for P. Whalen
Under the Skin of It
August on Sourdough, a Visit from Dick Brewer

ANNE WALDMAN (1945– )
How the Sestina (Yawn) Works
Revolution
Diaries
The Blue That Reminds Me of the Boat When She Left

LEW WELCH (1926–72)
“Whenever I make a new poem”
“I know a man’s supposed to have his hair cut short”

PHILIP WHALEN (1923– )
For C.
20:vii:58, On Which I Renounce the Notion of Social Responsibility
Prose Take-Out, Portland, 13:ix:58
Something Nice About Myself
True Confessions

JOHN WIENERS (1934– )
A Poem for Tea Heads
From A Poem for Painters
A Poem for the Insane

LETTERS, ENCOUNTERS, & STATEMENTS
ON POETICS
Donald Allen (1912– )
William Burroughs (1914–97)
Gregory Corso
Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Allen Ginsberg
Jack Kerouac
Frank O’Hara
Peter Orlovsky

Acknowledgments
Index of First Lines

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