Representative Works from Beat Movement

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"BOMB"

Corso's most famous poem, "BOMB," was originally published as a "broadside," a single large sheet of paper printed on one side, by City Lights Books in 1958. It then appeared in Corso's 1960 collection, The Happy Birthday of Death. Arranged in the shape of a mushroom cloud, the poem is Corso's ironic attempt to mitigate the destruction of an atomic war by portraying the bomb-drop as a Christlike second coming. Essentially, the explosion marks the end of human history and the beginning of heavenly eternity. Although the theme is dark and chilling, Corso presents it in typical Beat style with a rush of fragmented images, raw language, and a wry sense of humor. It is primarily the latter attribute that turned off many wouldbe supporters. With lines such as, "I sing thee Bomb Death's extravagance Death's jubilee / . . . to die by cobra is not to die by bad pork," Corso...

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This section contains 1,430 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Beat Movement Study Guide
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Literary Movements for Students
Beat Movement from Literary Movements for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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