A Coney Island of the Mind is a collection of poetry by Lawrence Ferlinghetti originally published in It contains some of Ferlinghetti’s most famous poems. A Coney Island of the Mind has ratings and reviews. Bill said: This is one of the best-selling poetry books of all time, and, although that i. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the publication of Coney Island of the Mind, Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s landmark second volume of poetry.
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Your purchase helps support NPR programming. Inin a bookstore in Brookline, M.
A poem from A Coney Island of the Mind by Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Anyone who might have seen me turning the pages of Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s A Coney Island of the Mind would have mistaken me for an unremarkable year-old in a winter coat and unbuckled galoshes, with a book bag slung over his side. And up to that moment that’s exactly who I was: Life in my household was always tense and sulky, and, now and then, explosive. Terrified of blow-ups, I did my best to fit in. I tried to be the kind of person my parents expected me to be.
I worked hard in school and I never got into trouble. I was more angster than gangster: But reading Ferlinghetti, I encountered a breathtaking rejection of the values I grew up with. Ferlinghetti denounced American consumerism “singing from the Yellow Pages. Longings I didn’t know I had suddenly sprung to life: Mine was the heart Ferlinghetti described as a foolish fish cast up and gasping for love “in a blather of asphalt and delay.
A Coney Island of the mind 20 (Lawrence Ferlinghetti)
Alan Shapiro was nominated for the National Book Awards. Courtesy of Algonquin Books hide caption.
When I left the store, I may still have been the middle-class kid I was, diffident, self-conscious and too eager to please. But from then on, I was inwardly transformed.
I lived a secret life in the poetry I went on to read — and in the poems I began to write. On the page, I undermined the rules I lived by off the page. I dreamed of the world Ferlinghetti invited me to enter, a world of impulse and imagination where lovers went “nude I even thought that I’d found that blessed state a few years later when I arrived at Woodstock, not knowing that even there in paradise I was still my parents’ son, which is why I think I was the only person among the half a million in attendance who was unable to procure either sex or drugs.
Accessibility links Skip to main content Keyboard shortcuts for audio player. A Ferlinvhetti Island of the Mind elevated him out of the staid world of his parents and changed his sense of self forever. Is there a book that shook your convictions? Tell us about it in the comments. Facebook Twitter Flipboard Email. November 12, 7: