Irwin Allen Ginsberg

Born on this day in 1926

 

The beat writers had a profound effect on my life as a young man, especially Ginsberg and Kerouac. A friend gave me a tattered copy of On The Road while I was in college and my life was forever changed. And their writings, especially Allen Ginsberg’s, seem just as relevant today as when they were written. For more in the Five Quotes series, click here.

“I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked, dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of the night.”

“Concentrate on what you want to say to yourself and your friends. Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness. You say what you want to say when you don’t care who’s listening.”

“We’re all golden sunflowers inside.”

“Poetry is not an expression of the party line. It’s that time of night, lying in bed, thinking what you really think, making the private world public, that’s what the poet does.”

“Whoever controls the media, the images, controls the culture.”

“Our heads are round so thought can change direction”

“I know too much and not enough”

“Poetry is the one place where people can speak their original human mind. It is the outlet for people to say in public what is known in private.”

“Everything is holy! everybody’s holy! everywhere is holy! everyday is in eternity! Everyman’s an angel!”

“America I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing.”

“To gain your own voice, forget about having it heard. Become a saint of your own province and your own consciousness.”

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