Allen Ginsberg's "Kaddish," a long poem written about the madness and death of his mother, Naomi, is widely considered to be one his major works. This special fiftieth-anniversary edition of Kaddish & Other Poems features an illuminating afterword by the noted Ginsberg biographer Bill Morgan, along with previously unpublished family photographs, Naomi's paintings, and documents and letters relating to the composition of the poem.
"In the midst of the broken consciousness of mid-twentieth century suffering anguish of separation from my own body and its natural infinity of feeling its own self one with all self, I instinctively seeking to reconstitute that blissful union which I experience so rarely. I took it to be supernatural and gave it holy Name thus made hymn laments of longing and litanies of triumphancy of Self over mind-illusion mechano-universe of un-feeling Time in which I saw my self my own mother and my very nation trapped desolate our worlds of consciousness homeless and at war except for the original trembling of bliss in breast and belly of every body that nakedness rejected in suits of fear that familiar defenseless living hurt self which is myself same as all others abandoned scared to own unchanging desire for each other."
— Allen Ginsberg, Kaddish