17 August 2006


One fall, I checked out "The Beat Generation" cd/book box set from the library in St. Louis. This is a great set, full of wild jazz, music by beat musicians, radio interviews with folk from the whole Greenwich Village scene, etc. I was inspired.

So grab a cup of joe and pull on your trusty old beret! Here are . . .

The Crazy Rules of Writing Beat Poetry

(it's rules-city cats!)

1. Treat words for emotions and all non-physical concepts as physical objects.
Ex.: "Drink Down Hate"
"Shovel Love off the Driveway"
"Wash all the Infinity off of Your Hands"

2. Use colorful, exotic nouns as adjectives.
Ex.: "Take Dragon Steps"
"Kiss Flamingo Lips"

3. Mix metaphors artfully. In Beat poetry things that are similar are quite often treated as if they are identical.
Ex.: "Swing your Bat in the Cave at the Shadows on the Great Wall of China"

4. Twist relationships.
Ex.: "Drug Addict is a Money Pusher,
Drug Dealer Addicted to Dealing."


Soldiers marching in where
Angels fear to soldier
And devils do their laundry
Fear moistens the brow

* * *

An old van is the brothel
Hell on cement blocks
Wheels retired
She's barely attired
I just can't bear the
Bare skin whore

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