Beat Poetry Quotes

Quotes tagged as "beat-poetry" Showing 1-25 of 25
Allen Ginsberg
“Follow your inner moonlight, don’t hide the madness.”
Allen Ginsberg, Howl and Other Poems

Tom Waits
“The large print giveth and the small print taketh away.”
Tom Waits, The Early Years: The Lyrics, 1971-1983

Jack Kerouac
“The trouble with fashions is you want to fuck the women in their fashions but when the time comes they always take them off so they don't get wrinkled.
Face it, the really great fucks in a man's life was when there was no time to take yr clothes off, you were too hot and she was too hot - none of yr Bohemian leisure, this was middleclass explosions against snowbanks, against walls of shithouses in attics, on sudden couches in the lobby -
Talk about yr hot peace.”
Jack Kerouac, Book of Sketches

“we met one strange summer

in a regular tangle of sticky webs

you had the air of angels sweet but I--

drowned with the damned spirits

in lava oceans fearing your--

foreign static frequency

and grey-green eyes

(I swear they are even if you--

think otherwise): storms

calm ones, calmer than my--

raging coals, empty and dead

you speak of souls like you believe

always an optimist in pessimistic

skin of ivory and titanium mesh...”
Moonshine Noire

Christopher McDougall
“Whenever an art form loses its fire, when it gets weakened by intellectual inbreeding and first principles fade into stale tradition, a radical fringe eventually appears to blow it up and rebuild from the rubble. Young Gun ultrarunners were like Lost Generation writers in the ’20s, Beat poets in the ’50s, and rock musicians in the ’60s: they were poor and ignored and free from all expectations and inhibitions. They were body artists, playing with the palette of human endurance.”
Christopher McDougall, Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Allen Ginsberg
“I eat a catfish sandwich
with onions and red sauce
20c. (Havana 1953)”
Allen Ginsberg

Karl Wiggins
“It really was a whole generation who were listening to Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, Ella Fitzgerald, Sonny Rollins, James Moody, Fats Navarro and, a little bit later on, Mongo Santamaría and Chuck Berry, and these dozen or so guys gave them a voice. They led the way. They wrote what a whole generation wanted to read. The time was right and they seized the day by writing about their lives. They travelled, they got into scrapes, they got arrested, they got wasted … and they wrote about it.

Isn’t that something?”
Karl Wiggins, Wrong Planet - Searching for your Tribe

Karl Wiggins
“We’ve all got a dozen or so friends, haven’t we? And when we’re drunk we philosophise well into the night on an array of subjects ranging from what happened before the Big Bang to who would win a fight between a vampire and zombie, to what’s the most compromising position to be caught in, but we’re hardly going to be extolled in 60 or 70 years’ time as the Heat Generation or the Cheat Generation or the Street Generation, are we?

The Tweet Generation, maybe, but that’s about all.

So what was it about these few guys? Well, they wrote about what they did, and what they did was quite revolutionary back then. They went On the Road, and it was Jack Kerouac’s book that turned the tide.”
Karl Wiggins, Wrong Planet - Searching for your Tribe

Charlotte Eriksson
“sometimes i call someone up from my past just to make me feel something. to remind myself that someone stepped out of my life because he didn’t find it exciting here anymore and it’s a great thing to do if you ever want to feel something. if you get bored of emotional stability. call someone up from your past and just talk a bit. chat about his new life with new exciting people, let him hang up without asking a question of you and then look at the lonely water glass on your table and remember that you’re hungry and that it’s 3 a.m. and you’re still up alone.”
Charlotte Eriksson, He loved me some days. I'm sure he did: 99 essays on growth through loss

Charlotte Eriksson
“i don’t love things enough. i love very little.
it’s just one of many things i’m gonna change one day when things are different.”
Charlotte Eriksson, He loved me some days. I'm sure he did: 99 essays on growth through loss

Sterling Lord
“The Beats and the Pranksters showed us different ways of opting out of society. They were both the personification of countercultural movements. The Beats were trying to change literature, and the Pranksters were trying to change the people and the country. Kesey, in fact, was his own cultural revolution, striving to keep the upbeat, freedom-loving spirit of America alive.”
Sterling Lord, Lord of Publishing: A Memoir

Debbie Tosun Kilday
“Poets are Prisoners


Poets are prisoners
Practitioners, commissioners &
conditioners of the spoken word

Caged by their own minds
Words are shackles”
Debbie Tosun Kilday

Gregory Corso
“Should I get married? Should I be good?”
Gregory Corso, Marriage

H. Nix
“I’m always pouring myself out, making oceans with my mouth, working to get this oppressed emotion out of me.”
H. Nix, Oracle Incarnate: A book of inspiration, short stories, prose, and revelations.

Ron Padgett
“her lower lip
was like an orange
mint. and
i was a crying
little boy
in the candy store.”
Ron Padgett

Bob Kaufman
“Digging among reddened lipstained cups,
Of leftover sadness,
Hopelessly hoping hopefully
To find love
Of a dead moon
Or a poem.”
Bob Kaufman

Bob Kaufman
“My face is covered with maps of dead nations”
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness

Scott C. Holstad
“the words on the paper im readin are blarin out at me loud an angrylike tellin me there's no end to the recession theres no jobs theres no peace theres no hope man an people wonder why i do what i do? an bums are bummin lights from me and babies are squintin up at me an my coffee is rupturing my gut bitterlike an i guess the world is kinda like the coffee sometimes – ill be suffering thru both tomorrow.”
Scott C. Holstad

Allen Ginsberg
“I speak of love that comes to mind:
The moon is faithful, although blind;
She moves in thought she cannot speak.
Perfect care has made her bleak.

I never dreamed the sea so deep,
The earth so dark; so long my sleep,
I have become another child.
I wake to see the world go wild.”
Allen Ginsberg, The Gates of Wrath: Rhymed Poems, 1948-1952

Lawrence Ferlinghetti
“There is a stillness in the air, in the light of the dusk, in the eyes fixed forward, in the still end of life, an intolerable sweetness...”
Lawrence Ferlinghetti, The Mexican Night

Bob Kaufman
“For every remembered dream. There are twenty nighttime lifetimes.”
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness

Bob Kaufman
“The Church is becoming alarmed by the number of people defecting to God.”
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness

Bob Kaufman
“I am not not an I, secret wick, I do nothing, light myself, burn.”
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness

Bob Kaufman
“Spiraling in hollowed caves of skin-stretched me, totally doorless,

Emptied of vital parts, previously evicted finally
by landlord mind

To make nerve-lined living space, needed desperately by my transient, sightless, sleepless,
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness

Bob Kaufman
“(So much laughter, concealed by blood and faith;
Life is a saxophone played by death.)

Greedy to please, we learned to cry;
Hungry to live, we learned to die.
The heart is a sad musician,
Forever playing the blues.”
Bob Kaufman, Solitudes Crowded With Loneliness