Kenneth Patchen

(13 December 1911 - 8 January 1972 / Ohio)

Comments about Kenneth Patchen

  • Larry Smith (6/24/2009 6:28:00 PM)

    Kenneth Patchen (1911-1972) is America's Rebel Poet, as my biography on him declares. He was a maverick who had a great respect for form and for humanity, which he shares so generously in his work. He and wife Miriam are one of the great love stories in American literature...lovers and rebels seeking a new order for humankind, they sought to witness the tragedy of America and yet keep a vision of wholeness and wonder. Any young poet who misses Patchen, misses a model he will have to discover on his/her own.

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  • Ola Lars Andresen (9/24/2005 8:03:00 PM)

    I'm amazed to find myself the first to offer a comment about Kenneth Patchen. I've read him over and again since 1967, so it's time then. To make it short. Without him, there wouldn't have been a beat generation or any beat poetry or fiction - the way it all came along. Patchen inspired them all. I first came across his name in a small collection of literary essays by Henry Miller, but I first got a chance to read him when offered some books by a fugative representative of the Black Panters a year before the European student revolts in 1968.

    I'm till this day intrigued by a novel called The Journal of Albion Moonlight, first published in 1950, I belive. Unfortunately I think its message is more valid now than ever. The way I read it, it's about a fascist US.

    And his poems? Just start reading, laughing and crying.

    If somebody wonders about my age and gender, I'm close to 60 and male.

  • Ola Lars Andresen (9/24/2005 8:00:00 PM)

    I'm amazed to find myself the first to offer a comment about Kenneth Patchen. I've read him over and again since 1967, so it's time then. To make it short. Without him, there wouldn't have been a beat generation or any beat poetry or fiction - the way it all came along. Patchen inspired them all. I first came across his name in a small collection of literary essays by Henry Miller, but I first got a chance to read him when offered some books by a fugative representative of the Black Panters a year before the European student revolts in 1968.

    I'm till this day intrigued by a novel called The Journal of Albion Moonlight, first published in 1950, I belive. Unfortunatelyg I think its message is more valid now than ever. The way I read it, it's about a fascist US.

    And his poems? Just start reading, laughing and crying.

    If somebody wonders about my age and gender, I'm close to 60 and male.

Best Poem of Kenneth Patchen

Let Us Have Madness

Let us have madness openly.
O men Of my generation.
Let us follow
The footsteps of this slaughtered age:
See it trail across Time's dim land
Into the closed house of eternity
With the noise that dying has,
With the face that dead things wear--
nor ever say
We wanted more; we looked to find
An open door, an utter deed of love,
Transforming day's evil darkness;
but We found extended hell and fog Upon the earth,
and within the head
A rotting bog of lean huge graves.

Read the full of Let Us Have Madness

Let Us Have Madness

Let us have madness openly.
O men Of my generation.
Let us follow
The footsteps of this slaughtered age:
See it trail across Time's dim land
Into the closed house of eternity
With the noise that dying has,
With the face that dead things wear--
nor ever say

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