Thursday, August 10, 2006
this time :
among the cynics
Singing Horse Press
Like all the books this time, ‘among the cynics’ has no page count. It consists of ten poems. Nine very short ones and the longer ‘A Tree Among Trees’. The cover art is by Monika Burczyk. The writing here is crisp, it’s no surprise that Gil Ott published it. The final poem in the chapbook, ‘Fighting in Zagora’ seems appropriate. Using simple language, Fitterman speaks beyond the arch of time,
is it then
that I don’t
replace Zagora with Baghdad or Beirut, and the question is still valid and still unanswered.
Robert Fitterman has gone on to a distinguished career, and lives in New York. It’s great to see in chapbooks like this how writers evolve, and I am glad to have gotten this snapshot of his.
Little Sermons of the Big Joy
Insight to Riot
This little book, and it is that coming in at 5 1/2 X 5 1/2", is a long poem by James Broughton, and published handsomely by Insight to Riot, the Philadelphia Press run by Jim Cory, Janet Mason, and C A Conrad in the early 1990s. Jim Cory edited a collection of Broughton’s work for Black Sparrow Press, and this piece came from that experience.
In its heyday, Insight to Riot, published several fine chapbooks and small books done with care and an artist’s eye. That artist was their collaborator, cover artist and book designer, John Ignarri. Each of the principals of Insight to Riot have gone on to establish themselves in the city of Philadelphia and beyond. They left behind a beautiful legacy.
Black paper with red rectangle inlaid to make a distinctive cover, hophophop Press bounded forth with this 2002 chapbook by MacGregor Card. Card came upon a novel concept with this one. There are 9 poems in the collection, and the odd numbered poems are named from buildings designed by A.G. Rizzoli. There are corresponding images throughout the chapbook of some of the buildings the poem titles come from.
This collection is #3 in hophophop Press chapbook series. One hopes that that number has continued to grow!
C A Conrad
C A Conrad has become a well known fixture in the Philadelphia poetry community for his tireless work developing the "scene", his constant appearance and numerous readings, as well as his accomplishments with Insight to Riot and now his own Press, Mooncalf.
This 2003 slim volume is mostly a "tease" for a larger version of Frank as well as for his growing body of work, as predicted, accurately, in the back of this chapbook. There is a list of five books "coming" including DEVIANT PROPULSION which was published by Soft Skull in 2005.
This version of ‘Frank’ consists of 13 pages of poems in a simple purple paper cover with a large F on the front. The purpose of this "give-away" was to draw attention to his upcoming large work. One would have to say it was a successful move on his part.