Thursday, December 29, 2005



Justin Katko sent along this message to me and thought I'd pass it along to all of you, looks like an interesting venture. MS

Submissions are now open for Dirt #3. Chaps, e-books, and other
publications are being accepted for the purpose of review. Also of interest to us this issue are pieces of short (short) fiction. Remember, Dirt focuses on
minimalism, so work that is longer or of a different style is discouraged, though our minds are open. If you want to send items via snail mail, then contact me for
my address. Send all other subs to _ ( )

For more information, visit the site: _

(Copy & distribute as desired.)

PR Primeau
Editor, Dirt

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Drill 7

The call goes out! I've already received some good work for the next issue and I'm looking forward to seeing more of it. Hoping for an early February release date, so I'll be accepting work until the end of January. This issue will include a cd of sound work - Eric Unger is in charge of it, so please get in touch with him if you'd like to submit - although I think it might already be filled (but you might want to check for future issues). Eric is officially the sound editor of Drill. This issue will again be in 8 1/2 by 11 inch format, staple bound. And free for everyone doing the work of poetry.


The Autobiography vol. 1

Anyone who wants a copy of my book in the mail, just e-mail me ( your shipping address and we'll get it poppin'. It might take a little while to arrive- I'll probably be shipping by boat.

Hanging Mistletoe, face full of sour cream and latkes, got nutmeg in my coffee, my insides are warm- love and happy holidays.

Aaron Lowinger

Friday, December 16, 2005

Plantarchy 1

Thought some of you might be interested in this journal - featuring, among many other talented poets, Matt Klane.


the first release from Critical Documents:

Plantarchy 1
a new journal of poetry and poetics
108 pgs, $10 / 7 lbs

- Featuring -

Poetry: Tom Raworth, Jow Lindsay, Lisa Jarnot, William R. Howe, Alan
Sondheim, Matthew Klane, Rodrigo Toscano, Andrew Topel, Sheila E. Murphy,
Chris Stroffolino, 405-12-3415, Maria Damon, mIEKAL aND, Kevin R. Hollo,
and Christophe Casamassima. Verbo-Visual Work: Camille Martin, John M.
Bennett & Jim Leftwich, Geof Huth, Ritchie A. Katko, and Jeff Hansen. An
essay on Neoism: Stephen Perkins. Editor: jUStin!katKO

4-issue sub: $25 / 17 lbs

(now accepting submissions for 'issue 2: performance and performativity'
until March 1, 2006)

Thursday, December 15, 2005

2005 Goodbye Prism Poetry Sound Show

December 30th
RustBeltBooks, Buffalo NY
7 pm

fritton, unger, slosek, gordon, jsmith, lowinger, daly, meal, baker, you

Genre trepidation

Okay, this is going to be a strange question, especially given my earlier comments. But take it seriously and answer me (please). Where is the line between porn and poetry? Is a poem more likely to bridge that gap by being text-based, or picture-based? What can you reasonably expect a poem to "do" for you? Poets have always been fascinated with their power to make stuff physically happen outside the page--console the mournful, seduce the romantic, inspire the political. In recent times comic poetry has become more acceptable (a poem to make you laugh). What are the limits of... respectability? regarding what a pornographic poem might encourage one to do? This could be asked about other... "gross" or "base" functions... a poem that makes you desperate to eat or... I ask this partly in response for Eric's call for experimentation.

Friday, December 09, 2005

How to get our books

I got us an email address thanks to Eric Unger's invitation to gmail. If you'd like one our books please write to us at: If you could put the author's name and the title of the book in the subject line that would help us out. Thanks. MS

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Katalanche Press

hey, do ya'll know about this other little press? they make pretty books, well, i have one of them (film poems? something like that, very pretty). i know some of you know michael carr.

katalanche press


Jess Mynes and Aaron Tieger's new books

I received Jess Mynes and Aaron Tieger's new book in the mail a few days ago, put out by Fewer and Further Press. It' a collaborative work that was written through correspondence in the month of May 2004. It's truly a collaboration - one is hard pressed to find who wrote which poems or if the whole lot was written together (and that I believe is the mark of a successful collaboration - when the work stands above individual style or writing habit). Much of the book deals with the quotidian and how it goes into constructing a sense of self and place in the world - which makes the fact that this is a collaboration all the more interesting, as an insistence on community and the social.


Radical Post Card Art Revisted

Kevin Thurston put me in check, letting me know that Mr. Unger's post cards partake in a long history of mail art. Kevin is your go to guy re: mail art. Thought you all might be interested in seeing one of Eric's cards, and as it's Christmas time, thought I'd put one of his more festive cards up. Enjoy!


Monday, December 05, 2005

Luke and Barrett's book

Drill issue 6

Robin Brox's book

Electric City Spectacular Program

Aaron's Perfect Game

Gelsinger's book

Sunday, December 04, 2005


Thought I'd post the url for Olson's weblog:


Chuck O

So I guess Charles Olson DIDN'T die 35 years ago, but is alive and well. Check out Ron Silliman's blog; he says it better than I do.



Yesterday I recieved John Sakkis's magazine BothBoth in the mail. If you haven't seen this little ditty yet, you should definitely check it out. It's a monthly magazine that publishes two poets: it's reversable, so that neither poet is first in order. The December "Christmas" issue features Anna Moschovakis and C.A. Conrad (German translations by Holger with Jonas Slonacker and Sigrid Mayer). Most of the poets Sakkis publishes are from the SF area or Boulder, CO (as far as I can tell). You can check out John's blog at:


Saturday, December 03, 2005

Herman Düne

Herman Düne

One more friend of a friend to experience, the music of Herman Düne, who shared the stage with in October with Ric Royer's friend/collaborator G Lucas Crane (Nonhorse Stopwatch) at the Cakeshop in Manhattan. They have a host of media you can stream, particularly a video "Not on Top" and a song "You Could Be a Model" which I haven't be able to stop listening to in recent hours. My friend Jan Junker is part of an emerging singer/songwriter community from Berlin to Paris to New York to Montreal. I say emerging because they are all our age and getting better and crossing more lines. I'd be curious to know they'd feel in your ears.


Friday, December 02, 2005

Thanks to Scott Puccio

At first, as I mentioned to him (he didn't look too excited about it), Films About Buffalo reminded me of a scene in Man with the Movie Camera. The cameraman takes his eyes off the viewfinder, and a rush of images flows to his eyes. Reality poses a rush of possibilities, and the camera can choose to stabilize it, focus on the objectivity of the image, or dismantle it and seek truth in the most essential element of film- montage. Vertov, like any other great filmmaker showed both, yet his affinity, like Scott, lies with the latter.
A vicious rush of images of Buffalo. Friends, Wegmanns, the Park, rooms, light. Introduced on a map, it's various 'cultural' elements (Might Taco anyone?).
Perhaps it was my eyes. Perhaps Scott superimposed the film. Yet after a while, I felt as if the shapes on one frame were on the next, never ending. What we saw before was affecting the next, not in a classical montage way, but completely physically invading the image.
The past is not something we leave behind, but something that lives in the present, in shades, shapes, barely distinguishable from what it might be, a brief memory.
Thanks Scott, I can't wait to see more in the next Electric City.


p.s. Again, it might have been my eyes, my mind, but in Polyphemus, the white light spot on the eyeball, that cosmetic affect indicating life, a soul, seemed to be going in a certain fluid motion, perhaps even in circles. After a while, I was only watching those. Hopefully Scott can clarify if I'm misinterpreting.

Re: Nov 27 (Thurston, Lowinger, Fritton, Royer, Basinski)

From: Jonathan Skinner
Date: Dec 2, 2005 1:01 AM

Subject: Re: Mike Basinski & Friends at Rust Belt Tonight!

I was lucky to be able to hit this on my way out of town, back to Philly, and it made me want to say . . . Philly is great, but, jeez, this evening reminded me why there really is no place like Buffalo, for pushing the poetry and performance envelope. Thurston enumerated thirty or more Buffalo poets in a lawsuit action, claiming damage to his financial prospects. He also did some more serious stuff that was really good but I can't remember the details, just now--as I'd arrived a bit late and was settling in during his performance. I remember being captivated by his audience command.

Lowinger read (or wailed, in a kind of passionate Patti Smith circa Horses hipster break-down voice) his gritty autobiographical lyrics of life in Buffalo (in my neighborhood, so I'm partial), tightly woven in a synesthetic and looping temporality reminiscent of Trakl. The density, delivery and serial recurrences also reminiscent of Berrigan's Sonnets, but something totally new going on here.

Fritton issued hoods (in a variety of materials) connected by threads, that the audience was instructed to wear, while he delivered two lectures ("in lieu of poetry"): one on "super string theory" and one on "non-Euclidean geometry." The wearing of hoods (pulled down "all the way") was obligatory for the string theory lecture, optional for the geometry lecture. (Any Abu
Ghraib allusions also appeared to be strictly optional.) "Light is laced with sewn edges, surged." These "lectures" are impossible to paraphrase, but they were very clear, deadpan, funny, philosophical and moving. There was a crisp use of the imagery of angles, a poetic detournement of the syllogism, and a slow delivery not tied either to podium or page--as Fritton
walked into and out of the audience, delivering his points between thoughtful pauses. "Meaning makes what it measures . . . All of our angles fall out of our eyes [when we die]" Fritton's Ferrum Wheel, incidentally, is a great trashpo/vispo/ lost and found art publication project, well worth looking at:

If you haven't been "touched" by a Royer performance, well, I don't know how to encapsulate what he does, but this too entailed a "lecture" (titled Implenitudinistic Voyeurism: Athanatological Presencing in the Performic Mode, in the Age of Postmortemism) that swiftly segued into a variety of modes, some absurdist, some lyrical, some philosophical, including a
rendition of the hit song "Poltergeist, Poltergeist," and a laying of hands on and stage dive into the audience, with speaking of tongues. "I should also point out that . . . I am different from a piece of fruit," he had cautioned us at the outset. There was also a request for jokes from the audience, at which point Steve McCaffery treated us to a ribald WWII joke featuring Winston Churchill's long, hard, unwithdrawing manhood. (You'll have to ask for the details.) Royer's polite and soft-spoken charm belies performative sophistication and a mordant mind. It's been awhile since I've seen/ heard something as alive and wildly unpredictable yet tightly controlled--hardly a sloppy moment in the whole act.

No need to describe Basinski to this listserv (I hope), but we were treated to one tour-de-force "unstructured" piece, with three preludes and a coda.


1. Odin chant.
2. A continuously-sounding, 100 word poem ("sound of one breath clapping")
made of 2-syllable words that the poet never saw before ("I just kind of
made them up"). Facets of flowers, crysanthemums. "If there is a point

where you hear silence, I've failed." (I was worried by the degree to
which the poet's neck became crimson during this performance.)
3. 100 countries (this took about 15 minutes, with much help from the audience).

The Poem:

"Atriums of the Heart." A "very fecund" visual piece--"the instrument"--unwrapped from a plastic bag and sonically explored for the audience. "[In my fridge] I saw 10,000 people that George Bush left to die in New Orleans." "This particular heart does not beat for Republicans . . . There could be giraffes in the atrium of this particular heart." Falling into vowels, down the rabbit hole of an O. "All performances are contemporary."


"Pressed rat and warthog."

I'm glad I delayed my departure, to catch this reading, which renewed my
faith in poetry-as-live-art. The excitement of an environment where poems

spill beyond their edges and "mere talk" embarks you on the poem before you
know it. This was brilliant stuff! And so far as I can tell, from Philly
to NYC to Chicago to Portland to San Francisco to LA, it ain't happening

(like this) elsewhere . . .

Maybe this was a rare, last-minute convergence of a special group of poets, but Thurston's energetic arrival on the scene seems to be a good thing. (I understand he'll be bringing PhillySound poet and wizard CA Conrad to town.)

Hopefully, you can all make it out to support his events.

I have the recording, and it is righteous. Pending permission from the poets, look for it on PENNSound, one of these days.


Thursday, December 01, 2005

How To Write A Poem

Here's how to write a poem in 8 simple steps. This is a simple method that you can try for yourself in the comfort of your home:

1. Read the newspaper, it is full of words. Disregard most of the proper nouns.

2. Steal some of the best words by copying them into a notebook. Since no one will know, just steal whole phrases and sentences too. This will get you started.

3. Now you are ready for the real kicker: what the poem is. You must take into account the weather, the state of your mind, the state of the world, and everything and anything that has gotten you to where you are. Try not to be overwhelmed. This is hard, but give it your best shot.

4. Now it is advised that you go to your fuse box and turn off all of the electricity in your house. Turn off the heat too, and your cell phone.

5. Just sit there until you really can't stand to anymore. When you reach this point, turn everything back on, and stare at a white piece of paper. It will seem really white at first, but your eyes will adjust.

6. Now open your notebook and pick out some of the words and phrases you copied down earlier to write onto your sheet of paper.

7. Channel what you thought earlier about everything and anything in the world, and just write. Form will follow, and so will content, should there be any.

8. Edit. You can achieve this by crossing out things that don't seem to work. You may also want to add things. Repeat this step until your poem thinks that it is done. It will know better than you could ever hope to.


Gustave Morin Revisited

after getting aaron's post forwarded to me via canada, i thought i'd direct you (whomever you may be) to my perspective of gustave and his work

i interviewed him here:

Logan's Blog

I forgot to mention in the inaugural post that Logan Ryan Smith was the one who gave me the kick to get this blog up and should get said credit. Plus you all should check out his blog:

Logan does a great job with his magazine, Small Town - and was even nice enough to publish some of us: Mr. Gelsinger, Andrew Lowinger, Michael Slosek, Luke Daly, and Lauren Shufran. His latest book, "This is Affront You Pig" is quite a work you should all ask him about - I don't think it's up for sale, but he might send you along a copy.

We've had some nice cross pollination going on between Small Town and Drill (publishing Logan, his roommate poet translator John Sakkis (who has his own Blog you can link to from Logan, and should) and in the next issue poems by Michael Koshkin who runs Hot Whiskey Press (also another link through Logan's blog).

So Hats off to Logan!

A thought, links to the edges of the internet.

Though unfamiliar with Collins, this segment I read in Eric Unger's review is quite enough.
I wonder how you are going to feel
when you find out
that I wrote this instead of you.
An invitation to laziness. Isn't it enough that people walk around, summarizing their moments as 'just like a movie'? Now the people are asked to disregard those moments ranting, not quite finding that wonderful consice sentence, pages where they were looking for something, so Billy Boy can tell us?
Gelsinger said it right- slavery.
Enough of that guy.
A more amusing time stealer: a few links.
(click on the video on the right.)
and finally
an interesting canonical website, but the real joy are the four links
on the topright to individual sites for Dreyer, Bresson, Ozu and
Tarkovsky. Especially the Tarkovsky one has an incredible amount
of materials on and with the master. This grouping together of
these four directors is a reminder that we live in sad times:
A superficial bringing together of four artists who's only commonality
is that they're not Hollywood and use a long take or two. A
continued interest in using words like 'sprituality', 'transcendental'
to avoid further inquiry.As if we have the luxury to abandon our work
and concentration to the will of a sun god.

Radical Post Card Art

For a few years now, Eric Unger has been pioneering the field of Post Card Art. He makes these wonderful, slogany, collage type post cards out of construction paper, anti-substance abuse ads, post office stickers, and cardboard - paints them up and collages in whatever material he has at hand. When I get these in the mail, they make my day. In terms of what they do poetically, he uses this small space to collide slogans, ad campaigns, reviews of the latest Godard film from the 1970's Time magazine, and his own one liners. It's at the same time an elastic and constrictive form that has not been explored to its fullest extent - I think radical postcard art can take us a long way. What I find compelling is the way it literalizes O'Hara's "personism" - getting right there between you and the receiver, without the mediation of a typical setting for poetry (the journal or book). Poetry gets out into the world this way, passed around - the poem bleeding out into the world. Just wanted to tip my had to Eric for his hard work over the years and for making some inroads.