Saturday, January 17, 2009
Playing the Game
Designed by Keith Newhouse
Cold Chair Books
Moore College of Art
This small, even by chapbook standards, is 4 pages. FOUR. This is a single poem with art work and design by Keith Newhouse. I found no online presence for “Cold Chair Books”. The much published poet John DeWitt, who has taught at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia since the 1970's, informed me that he was part of Cold Chair Books. Along with Bill Walton of Moore College, they produced a number of fine chapbook including one I have held in my hands before (wanting to steal it from the library too, bad boy) Alexandra Grilikhes City Poems . I will have to do more research, but I have to say that Cold Chair Books was well ahead of their time and I am grateful to have one of their incredible booklets on my shelf!
Dying to be Released
Word of Mouth chapbook series
Meridian Writers Cooperative
There is great history in this chapbook. Meridian Writers Cooperative was active through most of the 1980s in Philadelphia. They published a few collections of poetry and some chapbooks of short fiction, and this is among the latter. Meridian was run by Joy Stocke, Sandy Crimmins, Fran Metzman, and Denise Larrabee.
Their chapbook series was called ‘Word of Mouth’ and this was #2 in the series. Francis Davis has gone on to publish several books, including In the Moment (1986), Outcats (1990), The History of the Blues: The Roots, the Music, the People From Charley Patton to Robert Cray (1995), and Bebop and Nothingness: Jazz and Pop at the End of the Century (1996). One of only 50 printed. Wonderful little chapbook. Unnumbered.
Christopher William Purdom
printed by CafePress.com
Just received this. 27 pages. This is volume 5 in what may be an endless series of self-published verse that may appeal to the friends of Mr. Purdom. The press, 226press.com is the publishing front for Mr. Purdom and no one else. Only his books are on the website and only his name is listed as “Poets”.
CafePress is the ‘publisher’ of this chapbook. CafePress is a vanity press. There are on their website 717 books that they have published listed there. Really? Editorial control is exercised rigorous there at CafePress? No, I sincerely doubt it. This is a POD chapbook. I have strong negative feelings toward POD books, have I mentioned this already?
For some reason, Mr. Purdom quoted on the back of his book as well as on his website a non-review from an unidentified (perhaps Mr. Purdom is merciful) reviewer. I will paraphrase it here, “I….am sorry to say….(I) will not be doing a review.” Neither will I.
To Stop the Arms Race, to Prevent Nuclear War….
L. I . Brezhnew
Novosti Press Agency Publishing House
Love these time capsules. This bit of “propaganda” in response to “propaganda” from the United States during the negotiations for the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty that was happening at this time. Agitprop cover art recalling earlier work by Constructionists, who were Russian afterall, although many died believing that art could move the Revolution while their leaders nakedly ruled with iron fists, but I digress….
Well made, as most Novosti produced books were. 54 pages. Staple-bound. To some, quite collectible.
Here’s another self-published book. Interesting combination of words and images. Apparently Mr. Stiler is apparently a visual artist who also write poems. He practices Zen Buddhism which affects his work in this book. Unnumbered pages. Images accompany each poem.