Howl and Other Poems, Ginsberg
EL237--Writing About Literature
Poetry is meant to be heard...
Exhibit A... Howl
Howl and the other poems in the chapbook are in itself a resistence to the norm and the destruction of political correctness before there was even a term called politcal correctness. I was just searching in a Wikipedia article at it stated that Ginsberg "saw the destructive forces of materialism and conformity in the United States at the time". That kind of a message needs to be in your face and over the top. The imagery of course is very compact but what about the structure of the poem itself. In Howl, GInsberg breaks almost every rule in the book by having notoriosly long lines and a saturation of repeated words and punctuation. In Canto II, the repitition of the name Moloch (a demon) shows the evil of society by association.
So does Howl has a message that is beyond the words?
I think so, that is the beauty of reading poetry. Once you see the pattern, you wonder how you could ever miss it.