My children do not understand the 1960's and neither did I, despite having lived through that decade, until I read Allen Ginsberg's Howl. This poem, in all of its epic proportions brings a most important transitional period in our cultural history up into face. It is a quintessential Beat poem. It soaks us with urbanity and the struggle for freedom from the post-World War II zenith of Industrialism.
This poem was written before I was born, but serves as anthem of sorts for me in the 21st Century. Ginsberg had already declared war on consumerism before it had a name. He gave it a name - Moloch. He warned me of my times before I was old enough to understand him.
It is interesting to me that my son has read and enjoyed this poem and that it has experienced a revival in the age of Occupy Wall Street. It is a rant that is now more timely than ever.