The Sonnets: L

By Ted Berrigan 1934–1983 Ted Berrigan
I like to beat people up
absence of passion, principles, love. She murmurs
What just popped into my eye was a fiend’s umbrella
and if you should come and pinch me now
as I go out for coffee
. . . as I was saying winter of 18 lumps
Days produce life locations to banish 7 up
Nomads, my babies, where are you? Life’s
My dream which is gunfire in my poem
Orange cavities of dreams stir inside “The Poems”
Whatever is going to happen is already happening
Some people prefer “the interior monologue”
I like to beat people up

Ted Berrigan, “Sonnet L” from The Sonnets. Copyright © 2000 by Alice Notley, Literary Executrix of the Estate of Ted Berrigan. Used by permission of Viking Penguin, a division of Penguin Group (USA), Inc.

Source: The Sonnets (Penguin Books, 2000)

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Poet Ted Berrigan 1934–1983

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School (2nd Generation)

Subjects Living, The Body, The Mind, Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics, Poetry & Poets

Poetic Terms Sonnet

Biography

Ted Berrigan—Edmund Joseph Michael Berrigan Jr.—was born in Providence, Rhode Island, the oldest of three children of Margaret Dugan and Edmund Berrigan, the chief engineer at Ward’s Baking Company. On both sides the family was Irish Catholic. Berrigan attended local schools and entered Providence College, a local Catholic school, but left after a year and enlisted in the army.

Berrigan was sent to Korea in 1954 but never saw . . .

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SUBJECT Living, The Body, The Mind, Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics, Poetry & Poets

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School (2nd Generation)

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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