Berkeley in Alameda County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Poetry Garden
This garden honors Berkeley’s many innovative poets, poetry presses and publications, and their creative legacy. It was dedicated in 1999 on the second anniversary of “Beat” poet Allen Ginsberg’s death. Through their writings, the nonconformist Beat poets sought liberation from traditional social, political, artistic, and personal conventions. Ginsberg lived across the street in a now-demolished house at 1624 Milvia Street while writing, among other poems, parts on his once-banned work Howl!. Poet Gary Snyder also stayed there. “Beat Generation” writer Jack Kerouac lived for a time in a “rose-covered cottage” on Berkeley Way, and poet Robert Duncan also lived in this neighborhood during the 1950s.
The creation of the garden was a joint effort of students, teachers, and parents from Berkeley Arts Magnet at Whittier School together with neighbors and the City of Berkeley.
Erected 2009 by Berkeley Historical Plaque Project.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Arts, Letters, Music • Horticulture & Forestry. A significant historical year for this entry is 1999.
Location. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1645 Milvia Street, Berkeley CA 94709, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Whittier School (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); North Berkeley Congregational (Grace North) Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Birthplace of the Asian American Movement (approx. ¼ mile away); Peet’s Coffee & Tea (approx. ¼ mile away); Edward A. Brakenridge House (approx. 0.3 miles away); Ohlone Dog Park (approx. 0.3 miles away); The 1923 Berkeley Fire (approx. 0.4 miles away); Hillside Club (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Berkeley.
Also see . . .
1. Cheap Thrills: The Allen Ginsberg Poetry Garden - Berkeley Path. Patch website entry:
On a quiet block of Milvia Street, on a plot of land abutting Berkeley Arts Magnet Elementary School (BAM), sits a tiny treasure, an enchanting oasis known as the Allen Ginsberg Poetry Garden. (Submitted on April 7, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
2. The Beat Generation. The Literature Network website entry:
In American in the 1950s, a new cultural and literary movement staked its claim on the nation’s consciousness. The Beat Generation was never a large movement in terms of sheer numbers, but in influence and cultural status they were more visible than any other competing aesthetic. (Submitted on April 7, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.)
Credits. This page was last revised on December 13, 2021. It was originally submitted on April 7, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 664 times since then and 58 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on April 7, 2012, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.