Following on from Roy Harper, Nick Harper, Bob Dylan and Jack Kerouac I thought it would be a good idea to move on to Allen Ginsberg! He was the first poet who ever turned me on to poetry. Howl blew me away when I was in my teens. For the first time I realised that poetry was the heart of revolution and could really speak to me. That was quite a change from the way poetry had been so badly taught in my school. They had made it into a drudge, a memory test with punishment. There was no attempt to understand or appreciate – merely to learn and recite. It had killed it for me. Allen enabled me to reconnect with the joy of poetry and opened many doors into a myriad of delights.
Howl and America remain two of my favourite poems.