Friday, December 28, 2018

Youu Gave Me Your Shadow by David Iribarne (2013)

You Gave Me Your Shadow
David Iribarne
self published

Unpaginated self published book of poetry. The cover image is the strongest thing about this book. It's a deeply personal collection which feels like a missive from the author to one specific person and not really meant for public consumption. That's probably how it should have been handled.

Ghost Soldiers of Volcano and other poems by Arthur Webb (1968)

Ghost Soldiers of Volcano and other poems
Arthur Webb
Mother Lode Publishing Co.
Fresno, CA

I like the cover stock.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Three Grange Halls by Jordan Smith (2002)

Three Grange Halls
Jordan Smith
Swan Scythe Press
Davis, CA
(c) 2002

There are reproductions of sketches from Edward Hopper's notebook sprinkled around this chapbook, very handsomely presented. In fact, I think the poems are sprinkled about as well. Tumbleweed. Milkweed in autumn breeze. Dandelion "helicopters" floating on a summer's day.

And I think that's my problem with poetry like this. The breeziness. The lack of depth. It's 2002 and the poetry in this collection like so many other collections anticipate the surface emptiness of "Instagram Poetry" perfectly. It's singy-songy nothingness. I read the whole book feeling like my hand was out of a window on a hot summer day, feeling air. Feeling air because there was nothing there. Nothing I would remember tomorrow. Chinese food for the soul.

Rattlesnake Press

a full house of Rattlesnake Press books, all of them defanged.

Sunday, December 09, 2018

Spiral by Kate Wells (2007)

Kate Wells
Rattlesnake Press
Pollock Pines, CA

Chapbooks like this one become journies into new and different threads that are the tapestry of small press history in this country. This chapbook was part of a lot that I found & bought online and I mostly got it because I didn't know any of the poets nor any of the publishers. Like Rattlesnake, which seems to be a big-deal West Coast regional press. Poetry with fangs, or something. That's what the website says. "Poetry with fangs."

Kate Wells' poetry is fangless. But it exists and I am acknowledging it. So, there. Next!

Friday, December 07, 2018

Julia Vinograd 1943-2018

Sometimes it's worth noting.

You should read her, now that she has left our dimension.