"These poems are intense, serious, hilarious, beautiful. The 'beast language' is intended to appeal to the animal inside every human . . . For McClure, language is something entirely different than simple words and syntax. He pushes language to many limits, most of them definitive. Words here become sounds, writing becomes speech; what is so foundationally cultural-language is imagined and acted upon as natural. If nothing else, this makes for some bravely original and compelling poetry, and McClure is widely recognized today as a revolutionary poet because of his atypical attitudes toward language."--Housten Donham, HTMLGiant.
"It's time for books with brains. . . . The famously lyrical (and out-of-print) Ghost Tantras by Beat poet Michael McClure is coming back to life."--Allison McCarthy, 7x7 Magazine
"Michael McClure is a Bay Area legend, a poet who participated in the Six Gallery reading that featured the public debut of Allen Ginsberg's 'Howl.' In 1964, he self-published 'Ghost Tantras,' written in a mix of muscular free verse, sensual lyricism and an elemental 'beast language' that includes roars, growls and other preverbal sounds. Now, 50 years after it first appeared, City Lights has reissued the book; 'Ghost Tantras' remains an essential volume for Beat Generation aficionados."--Georgia Rowe, San Jose Mercury News
"Michael McClure’s 'Ghost Tantras,' is also wonderfully welcome. City Lights Books has reprinted this slim volume by a Beat stalwart who never gets stale, has avoided with careful, exuberant wisdom the cannibalization of his comrades’ memories, and is fearless . . . "--Barbara Berman, The Rumpus
About the Author
Michael McClure is an American poet, playwright, songwriter, and novelist. After moving from Kansas to San Francisco as a young man, he was one of the five poets who participated in the legendary 1955 Six Gallery reading that featured the public debut of Allen Ginsberg’s landmark poem Howl. McClure remains a key figure of the Beat Generation and is immortalized as Pat McLear in Jack Kerouac’s novel Big Sur. A central figure in the Beat Movement and the San Francisco Renaissance, his poetry is heavily infused with an awareness of nature, especially in the animal consciousness that often lies dormant in mankind. He has received numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Obie Award for Best Play, an NEA grant, the Alfred Jarry Award and a Rockefeller grant for playwriting. McClure is still active as a poet, essayist and playwright and lives with his second wife, Amy, in the San Francisco Bay Area. McClure continues to reach new audiences through his poetry, plays, and performance.