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Analysis and comments on In The Baggage Room At Greyhound by Allen Ginsberg

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Comment 1 of 60, added on July 25th, 2008 at 4:06 AM.

This poem [In the Baggage Room at Greyhound] refers to the Greyhound
Terminal in San Francisco at Market and 7th. I worked there for a year in
1962-63 when a student. Ginsberg vividly and accurately brings to life
what it was like working there: his descriptions of the staff - the baggage
handlers; the 'huge tin horse' that we used to take baggage on from the
storage area to the buses; the racks where the baggage was stored and where
we used to sit and talk while waiting for the next bus. When i worked
there, Joe, Spade and Sam were still there, and Sam told us he worked with
Ginsberg, but unfortunately did not have a lot to say about him. The poem
talks about a 'basement', however, there was no basement there - the
baggage was stored in a room with high racks adjacent to the main hall. The
staff worked on 3 shifts [8am-4pm, 4pm - 12 midnite, and midite to 8am],
which you would bid on according to seniority. I actually thought the pay
was good - and saved enough to go to school, and the baggage room was an
intersting place to work. Although some buses, especially at rush hour,
were local, most buses were for points all over the US, and the big
Sceni-cruisers going to New York - and being driven non-stop virtually for
3 days -were interesting, and even exciting to be around, with a certain
buzz.

Reading his poem takes me back in time, over 40 years, such that i can
almost see, feel and smell the people [baggage handlers and travellers] ,
the baggage and the atmosphere of the terminal.

Stuart McMinn from Canada

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Information about In The Baggage Room At Greyhound

Poet: Allen Ginsberg
Poem: In The Baggage Room At Greyhound
Volume: Howl and Other Poems
Year: 1956
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 567 times
Poem of the Day: Dec 15 2008


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