“The poem is the cry of its occasion,” wrote Wallace Stevens.
What are we? Are we mind, body, soul? Some combination of these parts? Some other kind of whole?
Perhaps it depends on the occasion, the moment we’re asking the question.
In poetry, there are moments of intellectual reaction to chaos and disorder, to volatility and instability. Wallace Stevens can be said to be of this moment: the mind thinking through itself, seeking order in the medium of its reality, language.
There are other moments of a visceral reaction against order and conformity, against the madness of reason. Allen Ginsberg is definitely of this moment: the vitality of the whole individual resisting constraint, repression, and fear in the psychic medium of linguistic imagination.