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Allen Ginsberg

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About This Author
Jack Kerouac(1922-1969), the central figure of the Beat Generation, was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1922 and died in St. Petersburg, Florida, in 1969. Among his many novels are On the Road, The Dharma Bums, Big Sur, and Visions of Cody.

Bill Morgan is a painter and archival consultant. He is the author of The Beat Generation in New York: A Walking Tour of Jack Kerouac’s City, The Beat Generation in San
Francisco: A Literary Tour
, and edited Deliberate Prose: Selected Essays of Allen Ginsberg 1952–1995. Also for October 2006 publication, he has edited Ginsberg’s The Book of Martrydom and Artifice: First Journals and Poems, 1937–1952, with Jaunita Lieberman-Plimpton, as well as Howl on Trial: the Battle for Free Expression.


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Jack Kerouac(1922-1969), the central figure of the Beat Generation, was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1922 and died in St. Petersburg, Florida, in 1969. Among his many novels are On the Road, The Dharma Bums, Big Sur, and Visions of Cody.

Bill Morgan is a painter and archival consultant. He is the author of The Beat Generation in New York: A Walking Tour of Jack Kerouac’s City, The Beat Generation in San
Francisco: A Literary Tour
, and edited Deliberate Prose: Selected Essays of Allen Ginsberg 1952–1995. Also for October 2006 publication, he has edited Ginsberg’s The Book of Martrydom and Artifice: First Journals and Poems, 1937–1952, with Jaunita Lieberman-Plimpton, as well as Howl on Trial: the Battle for Free Expression.


Books by thisAuthor
  • Collected Poems 1947-1997

    Collected Poems 1947-1997
    Here, for the first time, is a volume that gathers the published verse of Allen Ginsberg in its entirety, a half century of brilliant work from one of America's great poets. The chief figure among the Beats, Ginsberg changed the course of American poetry, liberating it from closed academic forms with the creation of open, vocal, spontaneous, and energetic postmodern verse in the tradition of Walt Whitman, Guillaume Apollinaire, Hart Crane, Ezra Pound, and William Carlos Williams. Ginsberg's classics Howl, Reality Sandwiches, Kaddish, Planet News, and The Fall of America led American (and international) poetry toward uncensored vernacular, explicit candor, the ecstatic, the rhapsodic, and the sincere—all leavened by an attractive and pervasive streak of common sense. Ginsberg's raw tones and attitudes of spiritual liberation also helped catalyze a psychological revolution that has become a permanent part of our cultural heritage, profoundly influencing not only poetry and popular song and speech, but also our view of the world. The uninterrupted energy of Ginsberg's remarkable career is clearly revealed in this collection. Seen in order of composition, the poems reflect on one another; they are not only works but also a work. Included here are all the poems from the earlier volume Collected Poems 1947-1980, and from Ginsberg's subsequent and final three books of new poetry: White Shroud, Cosmopolitan Greetings, and Death & Fame. Enriching this book are illustrations by Ginsberg's artist friends; unusual and illuminating notes to the poems, inimitably prepared by the poet himself; extensive indexes; as well as prefaces and various other materials that accompanied the original publications.

    Journals

    Journals
    Early Fifties, Early Sixties
    In the 1950s and early 1960s, Allen Ginsberg and his fellow Beats led an insurrection that profoundly altered the American literary and cultural landscapes. Collected here are journal entries culed from eighteen notebooks that Ginsberg kept during this extraordinary period -- thoughts, poems, dreams, reflections, and diary notes that intimately illuminate Ginsberg's actual travels and his mental journeys. They reveal a remarkable and fascinating life: conversations with William Carlos Williams; drug experiences; a chance meeting with Dylan Thomas; stays in Mexico, San Francisco, and New York; first impressions of "Naked Lunch"; bits and peices of "America, Kaddish" and other poems; political "ravings"; and, of course, times with William S. Burroughs, Jack Kerouac, Gergory Corso, Herbert Huncke, Peter Orlovsky, and many, many others. What emerges is a truly unique personal account that will touch the mind and the soul.

    Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg

    Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg
    The Letters
    "[An] essential Beat masterpiece." --The Village Voice. Perhaps one of the last great dual correspondences of the twentieth century, Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg: The Letters reveals not only the process of creation of the two most celebrated members of the Beat Generation, but also the unfolding of a remarkable friendship of immense pathos and spiritual depth. Through this exhilarating exchange of letters, two-thirds of which have never been published before, Kerouac and Ginsberg emerge first and foremost as writers of artistic passion, innovation, and genius. Vivid and enthralling, the letters, which date from their first meeting in 1944 to Kerouac's untimely death in 1969, chronicle the endless struggle, anguish, and sacrifice involved in giving form to their literary visions.

    The Selected Letters of Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder, 1956-1991

    The Selected Letters of Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder, 1956-1991
    One of the central relationships in the Beat scene was the long-lasting friendship of Allen Ginsberg and Gary Snyder. Ginsberg introduced Snyder to the East Coast Beat writers, including Jack Kerouac, while Snyder himself became the model for the serious poet that Ginsberg so wanted to become. Snyder encouraged Ginsberg to explore the beauty of the West Coast and, even more lastingly, introduced Ginsberg to Buddhism, the subject of so many long letter exchanges between them. Beginning in 1956 and continuing through 1991, the two men exchanged more than 850 letters. Bill Morgan, Ginsberg’s biographer and an important editor of his papers, has selected the most significant correspondence from this long friendship. The letters themselves paint the biographical and poetic portraits of two of America’s most important—and most fascinating—poets. Robert Hass’ insightful introduction discusses the lives of these two major poets and their enriching and moving relationship.

  • First Thought Best Thought

    First Thought Best Thought
    "First thought, best thought." This was the phrase that poet Allen Ginsberg used to describe spontaneous and fearless writing, a way of telling the truth that arises from naked and authentic experience. For more than 30 years, groundbreaking teachers at Naropa University such as Ginsberg and his colleagues Anne Waldman, William S. Burroughs, and Diane di Prima have inspired emerging poets and prose writers to express themselves with unfettered honesty and immediacy. Now, with First Thought, Best Thought, the first landmark release from Naropa University's treasured audio archives, you are invited to meet and learn with these literary mentors face-to-face as they share the secrets of their craft. Selected and edited by poet and Naropa alumnus Randy Roark from thousands of hours of performance and teaching sessions, First Thought, Best Thought brings you four rare gems of inspiration and practical wisdom, including: William S. Burroughs teaching his breakthrough methods for generating fresh writing—including the cut-up method, chance operations, and dreamworkDiane di Prima on how to survive as an artist—preserving your sensibility, creating a supportive artistic community, getting published, self-publishing, and much moreAllen Ginsberg exploring every stage of poetic activity—from inspiration, to composition, to revision, to performing your poetry in publicAnne Waldman on the elements of the poet's craft—from the raw material of the words themselves to the many aspects of the poem in performance

    Collected Poems 1947-1980

    Collected Poems 1947-1980

    Indian Journals

    Indian Journals
    Allan Ginsberg was the leading poet and conscience of the Beat generation. Indian Journals collects Ginsberg’s writings from his trip to India in 1962–63.

    Selected Poems 1947-1995

    Selected Poems 1947-1995
    Assembled by Allen Ginsberg, Selected Poems 1947-1995 is the definitive collection of the best works of one of the most influential and revolutionary poets of the twentieth century. Allen Ginsberg, famous for helping catalyze the Beat Generation, wrote poetry for more than fifty years. His innovative verse and provocative attitudes of spiritual, political, and sexual liberation inspired countless poets, musicians, and visual and performance artists worldwide, and helped shape several generations' views of the world. Selected Poems 1947-1995 commemorates Ginsberg's brilliant career as one of America's most distinguished poets. Here are well-known masterpieces such as the lyric "Howl" and the narrative "Kaddish" -- classic works of American literature -- as well as more recent gems, including the long dream poem "White Shroud," the visionary "After Lalon," and the political rock lyric "The Ballad of the Skeletons," a song he recorded in 1996 with a stellar band that included Philip Glass, Lenny Kaye, and Paul McCartney.

  • The Letters of Allen Ginsberg

    The Letters of Allen Ginsberg
    Allen Ginsberg (1926–1997) was one of twentieth-century literature’s most prolific letter-writers. This definitive volume showcases his correspondence with some of the most original and interesting artists of his time, including Jack Kerouac, William S. Burroughs, Gregory Corso, Neal Cassady, Lionel Trilling, Charles Olson, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Philip Whalen, Peter Orlovsky, Philip Glass, Arthur Miller, Ken Kesey, and hundreds of others. Through his letter writing, Ginsberg coordinated the efforts of his literary circle and kept everyone informed about what everyone else was doing. He also preached the gospel of the Beat movement by addressing political and social issues in countless letters to publishers, editors, and the news media, devising an entirely new way to educate readers and disseminate information. Drawing from numerous sources, this collection is both a riveting life in letters and an intimate guide to understanding an entire creative generation.

    Deliberate Prose

    Deliberate Prose
    Selected Essays 1952-1995
    Whether criticizing the American government, protesting the war in Vietnam, or denouncing capitalism, Ginsberg gave voice to the moral conscience of the nation. His personal essays on Jean Genet, Andy Warhol, Philip Glass, and others, give us compelling portraits of his fellow artists. And his views on poetry, free speech, Buddhism, and the Beats reflect the concerns of the postwar American culture he helped shape. Provocative, playful, eloquent, and of the moment, these essays offer a social history of modern America that remind us of the events and issues that preoccupied the minds of a nation -- and one of its most influential citizens -- in the postwar years.

    Spontaneous Mind

    Spontaneous Mind
    Selected Interviews 1958-1996
    From his conversation with the conservative William F. Buckley on PBS to his testimony at the Chicago Seven trial to his passionate riffs on Cezanne, Blake, Whitman, and Pound, the interviews collected in Spontaneous Mind, chronologically arranged and in some cases previously unpublished, were conducted throughout Allen Ginsberg's long career. From the late 1950s to the mid-1990s, Ginsberg speaks frankly about his life, his work, and major events, allowing us to hear once again the impassioned voice of one of the most influential literary and cultural figures of our time.

    Kaddish and Other Poems

    Kaddish and Other Poems
    50th Anniversary Edition
    Allen Ginsberg's "Kaddish," a poem about the death of his mother, Naomi, is one of his major works. This special fiftieth anniversary edition of Kaddish and Other Poems features an illuminating afterword by Ginsberg biographer Bill Morgan, along with previously unpublished photographs, documents, and letters relating to the composition of the poem. Allen Ginsberg, founding father of the Beat Generation, inspired the American counterculture of the second half of the twentieth century with his groundbreaking poems. Bill Morgan is the author of I Celebrate Myself: The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg. He lives in New York City and Bennington, Vermont.

  • Howl and Other Poems

    Howl and Other Poems
    "Allen Ginsberg's Howl & Other Poems was originally published by City Lights Books in the fall of 1956. Subsequently seized by U.S. Customs and the San Francisco police, it was the subject of a long court trial at which a series of poets and professors persuaded the court that the book was not obscene. Allen Ginsberg was born June 3, 1926, the son of Naomi Ginsberg, Russian émigré, and Louis Ginsberg, lyric poet and schoolteacher, in Paterson, New Jersey. To these facts Ginsberg adds: “High school in Paterson till 17, Columbia College, merchant marine, Texas and Denver copyboy, Times Square, amigos in jail, dishwashing, book reviews, Mexico City, market research, Satori in Harlem, Yucatan and Chiapas 1954, West Coast 3 years. Later Arctic Sea trip, Tangier, Venice, Amsterdam, Paris, read at Oxford Harvard Columbia Chicago, quit, wrote Kaddish 1959, made tape to leave behind & fade in Orient awhile. Carl Solomon to whom Howl is addressed, is a intuitive Bronx dadaist and prose-poet.”"

    Allen Ginsberg Poetry Collection

    Allen Ginsberg Poetry Collection
    A collection of poems by one of the greatest literary and cultural figures of the 20th century Upon the release of his first published work, Howl and Other Poems, in 1956, Allen Ginsberg became the unlikely force of a movement that would change a generation. Literature, art, sex, love, family, politics; nothing would ever be the same. The Beat Generation was born through Ginsberg and his friends. This collection of more than two dozen poems in verse and song is the best of the best, celebrating someone who was of his time, ahead of his time, and whose legacy will transcend time. Included are: Howl, Kaddish, Pull My Daisy, A Strange New Cottage in Berkeley, A Supermarket in California, Sunflower Sutra, America, Many Loves, To Aunt Rose, I am a Victim of Telephone, Kral Majales, Who Be Kind To, City Midnight Junk Strains, On Neal’s Ashes, September on Jessore Road, Mind Breaths, Jahweh and Allah Battle, Lay down Your Mountain, Don’t Grow Old, Father Death Blues, Plutonian Ode, White Shroud, Sphincter, Personals Ad, Hum Bomb, After Lalon, Put Down Your Cigarette Don’t Smoke, Charnal Ground, C’mon Pigs of Western Civilization, New Stanzas for Amazing Grace

    The Fall of America

    The Fall of America
    Poems of These States 1965-1971
    National Book Award for Poetry, 1973 Beginning with "long poem of these States," The Fall of America continues Planet News chronicle tape-recorded scribed by hand or sung condensed, the flux of car bus airplane dream consciousness Person during Automated Electronic War years, newspaper headline radio brain auto poesy & silent desk musings, headline flashing on road through these states of consciousness. . . .

    Illuminated Poems

    Illuminated Poems

  • Mind Breaths

    Mind Breaths
    Poems 1972-1977
    Meditations, rhapsodies, elegies, confessions, and mindful chronicle writings filling inward and outward space thru mid-Seventies decade. Mind Breaths: Australian songsticks measure oldest known poetics, broken-leg meditations march thru Six Worlds singing crazy Wisdom’s hopeless suffering, the First Noble Truth, inspiring quiet Sung sunlit greybeard soliloquies, English moonlit night-gleams, ambitious mid-life fantasies, Ah crossed-legged thoughts sitting straight-spine paying attention to empty breath flowing ‘round the globe;’ then Dharma elegy & sharp-eyed haiku. Pederast rhapsody, exorcism of mid-East battlegods, workaday sad dust glories, American ego confession & mugging downfall Lower East Side, hospital sickness moan, hydrogen Jukebox Prophecy, Sex come-all-ye, mountain cabin flashes, Buddhist country western chord changes, Rolling Thunder snowballs, a Jersey Shaman dream, Father Death in a graveyard near Newark, Poe bones, two hot hearted love poems: Here chronicled mid Seventies’ half decade inward & outward Mindfulness in many Poetries

    Plutonian Ode

    Plutonian Ode
    And Other Poems 1977-1980
    Plutonian Ode: Title poem combines scientific info on 24,000-year cycle of the Great Year compared with equal half-life of Plutonium waste, accounting Homeric formula for appeasing underground millionaire Pluto Lord of Death, jack in the gnostic box of Aeons, and Adamantine Truth of ordinary mind inspiration, unhexing nuclear ministry of fear. Following poems chronologies Wyoming grass blues, a punk-rock sonnet, personal grave musing, Manhattan landscape hypertension, lovelorn heart thumps, mantric rhymes, Neruda’s tearful Lincoln ode retranslated to U.S. vernacular oratory, Nagasaki Bomb anniversary haikus, Zen Bluegrass raunch, free verse demystification of sacred fame, Reznikoffian filial epiphanies, hot pants Skeltonic doggerel, a Kerouackian New Year’s eve ditty, professional homework, New Jersey quatrains, scarecrow haiku, improvised dice roll for high school kids, English rock-and-roll sophistications, an old love glimpse, little German movies, old queen conclusions, a tender renaissance song, ode to hero-flop, Peace protest prophecies, Lower East Side snapshots, national flashed in the Buddhafields, Sapphic stanzas in quantitative idiom, look out at the bedroom window, feverish birdbrain verses from Eastern Europe for chanting with electric bands, Beethovinean ear strophes drowned in rain, a glance at Cloud Castle, poems 1977-1980 end with International new wave hit lyric Capitol Air

    Reality Sandwiches

    Reality Sandwiches
    1953-1960
    “Scribbled secret notebooks, and wild typewritten pages for yr own joy.” Many of Ginsberg’s most famous poems. Wake-up nightmares in Lower East Side, musings in public library, across the U.S. in dream auto, drunk in old Havana, brooding in Mayan ruins, sex daydreams on the West Coast, airplane vision of Kansas, lonely in a leafy cottage, lunch hour on Berkeley, beer notations on Skid Row, slinking to Mexico, wrote this last night in Paris, back on Times square dreaming of Times Square, bombed in NY again, loony tunes in the dentist chair, screaming at old poets in South America, aethereal zigzag Poesy in blue hotel room in Peru—a wind-up book of dreams, psalms, journal enigmas & nude minutes from 1953 to 1960 poems scattered in fugitive magazines here collected.

    Planet News

    Planet News
    1961-1967
    Planet News collecting seven years’ Poesy scribed to 1967 begins with electronic politics disassociation & messianic rhapsody TV Baby in New York, continues picaresque around the globe, elan perceptions notated at Mediterranean, Galilee & Ganges till next breakthrough, comedown Poem at heart & soul last days in Asia The Change 1963; tenement doldrums & police-state paranoia in Manhattan then half year behind Socialist Curtain climaxed as Kral Majales May King Prague 1965, same years’ erotic gregariousness writ as Who Be Kind To for International Poetry Incarnation Albert Hall London; next trip West Coast thru center America Midwest Wichita Vortex Sutra . . . at last across Atlantic Wales Visitation promethian text recollected in emotion revised in tranquility continuing tradition of ancient Nature Language mediates between psychedelic inspiration and humane ecology & integrated acid classic Unitive Vision with democratic eyeball particulars-book closes on politics to exorcise Pentagon phantoms who cover Earth with dung-colored gas.

Bookish