Bob Kaufman

(1983 words)
  • Edward Lybeer

“I want to be buried in an anonymous crater inside the moon”, writes Bob Kaufman in the poem “Unholy Missions”. In spite of the poet's unusual, though insistent desire for anonymity, his wish still remains to be fulfilled. In San Francisco, 18 April has been declared “Bob Kaufman's Day”, and a street has been named after him. His life and work have become the stuff of legend and local folklore, the subject of odes and elegies, poetry readings and nostalgic memories. Simultaneously known as the only true American surrealist, the ultimate jazz poet, and the iconic Beat figure, Bob Kaufman has been claimed by disparate writers and schools of poetry. While usually associated with the writings of the Beat Generation, his poetry …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are not a subscriber, please click here to read about membership. All our articles have been written recently by experts in their field, more than 95% of them university professors.

Lybeer, Edward. "Bob Kaufman". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 04 March 2009
[, accessed 06 July 2015.]