Happy 86th Birthday, Allen Ginsberg!

3 Jun


“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.”

~Allen Ginsberg


Today would’ve been Allen Ginsberg’s 86th birthday.  In celebration, here are a couple of links:::

2012 Howl Festival

Howl (the film starring James Franco); clip of the section on how to write poetry

Allen Ginsberg reading part 1 of Howl

The flowering dogwood at St. Mark’s is blooming for Ginsberg’s birthday

“when did you forget you were a flower?” ~ Sunflower Sutra (one of my favorite poems — It’s beautiful. It’s true. It makes me tear up.)

Ginsberg’s Karma (documentary on Ginsberg’s time in India; produced by Ram Devineni and hosted by Bob Holman)

Ginsberg’s photography

Vomit Express (Allen Ginsberg and Bob Dylan)

Howl on the list of banned books

Ginsberg’s hometown of Paterson, NJ


5 Responses to “Happy 86th Birthday, Allen Ginsberg!”

  1. JHaeske June 4, 2012 at 1:35 pm #

    Thank you so much for that, didn’t have it on my calendar, but I will put that on right now.
    He was a good one. Thanks for the links too. I liked the ‘Howl’ film a lot – an infintely better way to approach a book like this in my opinion compared to what they did with ‘On The Road’ – what do you think?

    • Stephanie Nikolopoulos June 4, 2012 at 9:42 pm #

      I didn’t want to like Howl. I thought James Franco was just some Hollywood It actor. Then I saw the film and was blown away. Thought they did a great job.

      I haven’t seen On the Road yet. From the trailer, though, my expectations are pretty low. It looks a bit too commercial. Too much of a clean time-period piece. Have you seen the film yet?

  2. JHaeske June 5, 2012 at 11:56 am #

    Now, I haven’t seen it yet, and I guess I don’t want to watch it anytime soon. It certainly does look too commercial – it looks exactly like a Gap ad,but it may be my problem, I guess I’m too narrow-minded or something, I just cannot picture anybody else playing Kerouac and Cassady, especially not those actors (nothing against them, I hardly know them), but it just seems wrong.

    • Stephanie Nikolopoulos June 5, 2012 at 12:19 pm #

      Ha! A Gap ad. I like that. Didn’t the Gap do an ad reminiscent of Funny Face, which was portraying beatniks?

      I think part of it is the actors don’t seem to have gotten the voice/accent/rhythm of speech right, from what I’ve seen in the trailer. That’s something that Franco managed to do that impressed me.


  1. Allen Ginsberg’s William Blake Vision | Stephanie Nikolopoulos - April 3, 2014

    […] Blake for reasons that will soon become obvious. In 1948, when he was in his early twenties, Allen Ginsberg experience a supernatural vision. He was alone in his Harlem apartment, reading William Blake, when […]

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