Saturday, July 13, 2024

Night: A Fantasy by Lowell S. Hale (1922)

 Night : A Fantasy

Lowell S Hale 

Peter G, Boyle, publisher

New York

(c) 1922

I have been operating under the (false) assumption that what we currently consider to be the "chapbook era", staple bound booklets of poetry of roughly 32 pages, started in the 1940s and was "sparked" by the activities of several pacifists who were detained during the Second World War in Oregon as described in the book Here at the Edge by Steve McQuiddy. 

It's a neat premise, to be sure, since it ties the activities of those pacifists pretty directly to the San Francisco poetry community and the greater world beyond - 

then I discover this book, a 1922 staple bound chapbook - likely not called a chapbook in 1922 - which was published by Peter G Boyle who 2 years later would publish Robinson Jeffers book Tamar and Other Poems as a hardbound book. 

So, I was already leery about the 1940s narrative even though it fit with the story I have been piecing together BECAUSE I had already found what can only be called "chapbooks" by my definition that predate the 1940s. Are they the anomalies or was my time frame always incorrect? 

Since my interest in "modern poetry chapbooks" leads back to and out from San Francisco, I have been viewing anything outside of my own parameters as anomalies. I don't believe there is any one specific title that would be agreed upon as the "first poetry chapbook". 

All that said - I did find a Lowell Sebastian Hale (1896-1939) and the briefest of brief histories of this publisher, Peter G. Boyle, but really not much. Yet, a very early poetry chapbook indeed. 

Monday, July 08, 2024

A Cut Above Life : Poetry by William C. Leikam

 A Cut Above Life : Poetry by William C Leikam

self published


There is almost nothing here but paper. 

I did a search online and there was a book published in 1968 by William C. Leikam entitled Run for the Waves. The publisher was Caravelle Books (New York)

There is also reference to "the Fox Guy" who might also be the same Bill Leikam who was involved in a San Francisco based nature preserve, and this same person - publishing as W C Leikam brought out a book entitled Road to Fox Hollow in 2022. My guess is that all these folks are the same guy. 

Also, it was in a lot I bought from someone who lives in California. 

Sunday, June 30, 2024

Seafood Secrets of a Galley Slave by Jean Latta (1978)

 Seafood Secrets of a Galley Slave

by Jean Latta

Latta's Pacific Sea-Pak, Inc

Newport, OR


16 page cookbook. I know I am looking at this little cookbook with 2024 eyes but who thought it was still funny in 1978 to self-identify as a "slave" even in jest, even as a white woman? All joking aside, hopefully forever, it's now an unfortunate title. 

Printed on blue paper, which was an interesting choice. But still....

There is a Doe in the Winter Hayfield by Susan Gordon (2016)

 There is a Doe in the Winter Hayfield

Susan Gordon

Concrete Wolf 

Tillimook, OR


A book of the natural order, human and nature, life and death, sadness and grief, and all in 31 pages. 

Tuesday, June 04, 2024

growing forwards, growing backwards by Em Townsend (2023)

growing forwards/growing backwards

em townsend

bottlecap press

Hollywood, CA


I like the wraparound cover. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

The Squatchers by Gabriel Krawec (2020)

 The Squatchers

Gabriel Krawec

Interesting premise for an operation which appears to have been created to get teens to read, even if it's a single story, paper form. One Story, Inc. out of NYC (of course). Written by a "teen writing contest winner". 16 pages. 

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Eclogue : Poems of Patrick Moran & Peter Blewett (1998)

 Eclogue: Poems of Patrick Moran & Peter Blewett 

Basswood Press 

Green Bay, WI


Never heard of the poets nor the Press before. The cover is from a woodcut made by Bethann Handzlik. Peter Blewett and his students published their work under the Dead Pigeon imprint. The Internet provides scant material about that press or Mr. Blewett. Basically, I am acknowledging the existence of......

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Freight by Sondra Upham (2000)


Sondra Upham

Slapering Hol Press

Sleepy Hollow, NY


This hand sewn inscribed and signed chapbook came from the Hudson Valley Writers Center and was printed on interesting paper (I have seen or felt a book that was made of the same kind of paper before) 

This is a contest winner as well. Not all the poems are fluffy happy clouds though. Living with the Memory of Rape is as gut wrenching and painful as the title suggests.