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3.9 out of 5 stars
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3.9 out of 5 stars
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 22 December 2006
What can one say about Ginsburg? Infuriating, self-indulgent, slack, yes. And honest, generous, daring and great. He had his faults - he knew that. And huge merits including humour and not taking himself too seriously!

This is a generous selection of Ginburg's poems. Seminal poems like Howl -love it, hate it, you can't ignore it! - Kaddish, A Super-Market in California, and many others. And there are copious notes at the back from the man himself giving an insight into how the poems were written.

The whole volume gives a good overview of his whole career. To my mind after the seventies, the time of great writing was over. Yet through it all, shines a brilliant legacy.

Ginsburg always offers himself, unashamed with total honesty whatever the cost. That really is his message: be yourself, and through it become something more. At times he's too much. I suspect I won't want to move on to a collected Ginsburg. Yet, the greatness here transcends everything. I would not be without this volume.

Thank you Allen, great soul.
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on 18 June 2003
This book contains moments, minutes, hours, of brilliance. Howl is incredible, Kaddish is just as good, Mind Breaths is exactly how a journey on a breath around the world would look and sound. These for me are the stand out moments, but there are so many small delights in here. I recommend it to anyone who likes to feel real emotion when reading.
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on 24 June 2013
I thing Allen Ginsberg is great anyway and I love the way this book is laid out chronologically with poems as well as musical pieces that the ballad's should be read to.
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on 4 July 2016
Apart from a few great poems Ginsberg's poetry I have to say is not really my kind of thing too much. He's far too filthy and dark to be that good most of the time. He's more of an inspiration and a mouthpiece for youth culture across the generations than a poet sometimes.
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on 2 January 2016
I always wanted to read his poems; apparently one of the greats of the beat generation. Somehow I can not get into this.
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on 28 April 2016
its not an easy read - sorry
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on 8 June 2015
Brill
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on 7 January 2004
I enjoyed this very much after seeking out the authour after hearing a poem being read on an album by french post-rock band Dont Look Back. The poems are sort of dark and funny sometimes. He seems to be talking about his relatives...maybe a jewish trait I don't know. Well worth having though.
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