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A Lyrebird, Selected Poems of Michael Farrell by Michael Farrell; Editor Jared Schickling Now Available!

Revelation and habit conspire in this selection of Michael Farrell’s poetry, whose shambling virtuosity brings to mind the lost art of scat singing. From his earliest poems, Farrell’s skittish lines echo the studied laissez-faire of the New York School, but they also make it new, with a startling range of tone and diction broadcast—and exquisitely garbled—from somewhere down under. Yet perhaps the most astonishing quality of Farrell’s poetry is the way it summons that rarest of affinities—a correspondence with the movement of dance. For reading Farrell’s poems can feel like one is shadowing a step, a combination, by Gene Kelly—or Savion Glover, looping and breaking across a field of trifles and sorrows.

—Daniel Tiffany


Enter A Lyrebird and you open onto a polyphony of slang and nuance. Expect a humorous disorientation and deep travel through undersides of all that can be said and borrowed. Just in time, since mono-culture cannot know itself, Michael Farrell’s deft bravery transmutes English and gives us journeys out.

—Sarah Riggs

 
 
 
 

Michael Farrell grew up in Bombala, New South Wales. He lives in Melbourne. He has edited features for US journals Slope, GutCult and ecopoetics. He visited the US in 2004, 2015 and 2016, and has performed in Buffalo, Seattle, Berkeley, and San Francisco. Books unrepresented in this selection are BREAK ME OUCH (a comics poetry book, 3 Deep), and Long Dull Poem (SOd). His scholarly book, revised from his PhD, is Writing Australian Unsettlement: Modes of Poetic Invention 1796-1945 (Palgrave Macmillan). Michael also edited, with Jill Jones, Out of the Box: Contemporary Australian Gay and Lesbian Poets (Puncher and Wattmann, 2009), and edits the magazine Flash Cove (flashcovemag@gmail.com), with designer Wendy Cooper. He writes songs with Jimmy Hawk, and co-wrote the Dick Diver single “Waste the Alphabet.”

His poems have been included in the Turnrow Anthology of Australian Poetry (Turnrow) and Active Aesthetics: Contemporary Australian Poetry (Tuumba/Giramondo), as well as the following North American journals, some now defunct: Boston Review; Denver Quarterly; Verse; Pool; Lana Turner; can we have our ball back; Moria; Poetry; Shampoo; smalltown; Coconut; ex-ex-lit; Mirage#4/Period(ical); Yellow Field; blue and yellow dog; La Petite Zine; eccolinguistics; LIT; The Literary Review; Quarterly West; Slope; Tooth; Volt; Aught; Boog City; Dispatch Detroit; ducky; Fence; GutCult; Poethia; petticoat relaxer; sendecki.com; sidereality and others; thanks to their editors.


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Jared Schickling is the author of several BlazeVOX books, including the trilogy Two Books on the Gas: Above the Shale and Achieved by Kissing + ATBOALGFPOPASASBIFL: Irritations, Excrement and Wipes + The Pink (2015-13) and Province of Numb Errs (2016), as well as The Paranoid Reader: Essays, 2006-2012 (Furniture Press, 2014) and the chapbook Prospectus for a Stage (LRL Textile Series, 2013). He lives in Western New York and edits Delete Press and The Mute Canary, publishers of poetry.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 162 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-280-8

$18

 
 
 

A Lyrebird- Selected Poems of Michael Farrell Book Preview

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The MERCURY POEM by Jared Schickling Now Available!

 THE MERCURY POEM sifts through the aftermath of nuclear meltdown and lets the senses piece us together. A puzzle: in this our time of ever-expanding exclusion zones, how to take cover / take care inside foregone conclusion? What is not forgone? What is poetry inside such disaster? Ear to the ground, eye on the facts, and with heart and subtle humor, Jared Schickling offers a volatile music where “flammable animals cavort / bioplastic / in the bioplast” and the fish choir takes over. Here is poetry that pulses, in search of. Read up.

—Ryan Eckes


Writing from the liver of what he’d call a National Sacrifice Zone, Schickling’s oozy syntax mixes tire fires and shrimp songs, transboundary waste dumping and hungry babies. And against easy, blissed-out landscape poetry, he gives us ecologies as they are: wondrous saturations of life and matter disturbed by floods of mutagenic pollutants in poems like damaged double-helixes that make a jagged sense read forward or backward. This collection is, by turns, playful and ethically rigorous, performing playful flips in language but also never forgetting we live in a world that will remain marked for millennia by acts of corporate and governmental malfeasance. The poems remind us that environmental catastrophe and quotidian life touch each other in intimate, ongoing ways.

—Joe Hall


With THE MERCURY POEM, Jared Schickling brings us an oddly reversible apocalypse—the story of individuals grappling with their own bleak place in history. “A tsunami ruining the beach / during an election season,” “the exclusion zone is breeding,” and as an elegy to television, the poet finds normalcy in the unlivable.

—Jonathan Penton

Jared Schickling is the author of several BlazeVOX books, including the trilogy The Pink + ATBOALGFPOPASASBIFL: Irritations, Excrement and Wipes + Two Books on the Gas: Above the Shale and Achieved by Kissing (2013-15) and Province of Numb Errs (2016), as well as The Paranoid Reader: Essays, 2006-2012 (Furniture Press, 2014); the chapbooks Prospectus for a Stage (LRL Textile Series, 2013) and A Packet of Food (Omnia Vanitas Review, 2013); two Trump Locofo chaps, Donald Trump and the Pocket Oracle and Donald Trump in North Korea (Moria, 2017); and he edited A Lyrebird: Selected Poems of Michael Farrell (BlazeVOX, 2017). He lives in Western New York and edits Delete Press and The Mute Canary, publishers of poetry.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 72 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-300-3

$16

 
 
 
 
 

The MERCURY POEM by Jared Schickling Book Preview 

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Ekstasis by Peter Valente and Kevin Killian Now Available!

 This collaboration between two poets who also work in the visual arts, is a near perfect work of concision. Peter Valente turns the camera into poetry and Kevin Killian entices the poem to work with visual mastery.

—Neeli Cherkovski is currently finishing his new book of poems, Elegy for the Beat Generation


While Valente’s photographs appear coolly intimate, the deeper revelation is individual memory. What, exactly, have we been invited to witness? Is a face and body in the blue light sufficient? Or do we crave more? More tension, more ambivalence in the decision to share: what and how much? Ekstasis is a ménage à trois that rivals anything one could experience on Google+.

—Vanessa Norton is the cofounder and editor of Wasted Books.


Kevin Killian and Peter Valente’s haunting collaboration Ekstasis comes on like one of those dark dreams you can’t seem to shake – it’s memory and sensations still lingering long after you’ve awoken.

—Michael Salerno, artist, filmmaker, and publisher.

Peter Valente is the author of several books, the most recent of which is a translation of Nanni Balestrini’s Blackout (Commune Editions, 2017), and a couple of chapbooks. His poems, essays, and photographs have appeared in journals such as Mirage #4/Periodical, First Intensity, Aufgabe, Talisman, Oyster Boy Review, and spoKe. In 2019, City Lights will publish his co-translation of 33 of Artaud’s late letters (1945-1947) with an introduction by Stephen Barber. Presently, he is at work on a book for Semiotext(e). In addition, he has made 60 short films, 24 of which were shown at Anthology Film Archives.

Kevin Killian, one of the original “New Narrative” writers, has written three novels, a book of memoirs, four books of stories, and three books of poetry. For the San Francisco Poets Theater Killian has written forty-five plays, and the anthology he compiled with David Brazil—The Kenning Anthology of Poets Theater 1945-1985—has become the standard text on the subject. Recent projects include Tagged, Killian’s nude photographs of poets, artists, writers, musicians, filmmakers and intellectuals; and forthcoming, with Dodie Bellamy, The Nightboat Anthology of New Narrative Writing 1977-1997.


Book Information:

· Paperback: 102 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-292-1


$22

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ekstasis Images by Peter Valente - Text by Kevin Killian Book Preview 

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Excentrica: Notes on the Text by Steven Reese Now Available!

It’s a rare poet who can look the muse in the eye and speak through or with her as Reese has done in this fragmentary and insightful collection, which reads both as a form of exegesis, literary criticism and dialogue, as well as a love poem to literature. It is at once a beautiful composition in its own right, and an illumination of the magic and mystery of composing verse, addressing the poets’ many sources of influence and inspiration. Reading it, I envisioned a stone skipping across the surface of our literary history, leaving ever-expanding circles behind it before sinking into the water. And while the muse, Renate Ștefan perhaps the alter-ego of Steven Reese, or the reborn Reese as the name suggests, might be like the skipping stone, it is the circles left in her wake that the writer is left with, that he delineates and celebrates in this remarkable text.

—Nin Andrews


Steven Reese’s poem/essay/disquisition on/history of poetry stretches the boundaries of not only our definitions of poetry, but also the limits of language and its ongoing challenge to loosen itself from its leashes. True to its thesis, this work itself extends our definition of what a poem, as well as a poet, should be. His argument describes that quality of poetry that (similar to what Robert Bly says) “leaps” beyond the strictures of inhibiting poetic form, away from the ethno-, ego-, concentric, to the ex-centric. He brings along for the tour some of the greatest voices in poetry—not only in English, but in many other languages—including Yeats, Emerson, Rilke, Sappho, Dickinson, Paz, Mallarme, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and others who describe poetry’s out-bound force. Someone once said a great poet should think as well as sing, and Reese proves it can be done by taking us on a breathtaking poetic/aesthetic ride. And don’t even think about fastening your seat belt.

— William Greenway


Exhilarating. Expansive. Two margins charging the space between with eros.

—Caroline Longstreet

Steven Reese is the author of two previous volumes of poetry, Enough Light to Steer By (Cleveland State) and American Dervish (Salmon), as well as two volumes of translation, Synergos (selected poems of Roberto Manzano; Etruscan) and Womanlands (selected poems of Diana María Ivizate González; Verbum, Spain). He teaches literature and poetry writing at Youngstown State University in Ohio, where he currently directs the Northeast Ohio MFA in Creative Writing. Visit him at screeseonline.com.


Book Information:

· Paperback: 110 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-279-2


$16

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Excentrica- Notes on the Text by Steven C Reese Book Preview 

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pickles and Jams by cris cheek Now Available!

In Pickles & Jams, cris cheek exposes the very membranes that lie between the sensed-real of the culturally dominant and the barely-sensed hyper-real of the culturally emergent. His poetics (initially spawned and tested in Briton) isn’t of an “epiphany” variety, but rather is borne of a sabre-ready constructivist process, whereby the jettisoning of American Capitalist values is at a premium. And though History’s objects (“nation”, “family”, “self-hood”, “city”, “work-world”) no longer have the capture energy they once did, they are still malignant, and push us around. It is these ghosted objects/identities that cheek takes aim at. Acutely sensible to the post-occupy dilemma of “value the crash / crash the value,” his aesthetic tactics intend on having us both view and act on the spectacle from within. cheek's ever-increasing readership will once again be delighted to take much needed cultural cues from the most significant Anglo-American poet of our time.

—Rodrigo Toscano


The flarfy titles of these lush and brazen poems belie the intensity of their love and outrage, their puns tart and savory, acidic and sweet, and the preserving properties of poesie. The minor obstructions and dilemmas of these “pickles” and “jams” contribute to the texture of life in a neoliberal (though rapidly fascistifying) world, so much so that were life easier, “were you to get just what you wanted every time you read me/ as a bolt of white lightning striking a muddy brain repeatedly/… /
I would cry out please, I can’t stand it anymore, let me go.” cris cheek is one of my poetry heroes and he should be one of yours too.

—Maria Damon


Creative mishearings, extemporized speech, pattern/algorithm/procedure, typos (“Your typos / leak wisdom”), phonemic salad, technological fuckery… this is the stuff that cris’ work seems made of to me. Often he retains a certain syntax—a syntax of official “English,” and of past (official) English poets—deterritorializing it by bringing the arbitrariness of the phrase to a saturation point—and by this means breaking into “englishes.” Yet, when these poems stop playing they become deadly serious, arresting us with their melancholic romance and/or rants against racial capital and/or precise indictments of the (white male cis) liberal subject. Pickles & Jams offers a sustained and multi-modal demonstration of an anti-authoritarian language practice where the poet seeks “not a plain language but / a poetry advocating on behalf of resistance to external authority.” It extends cris’ ongoing investigation into and manifestation of a late-Antinomian tradition.

—Thom Donovan


How to taste impasse. Sniff (out) conundrum. Here is a myriad—cris cheek’s marble-mouthed, sardonic, homages to and parodies of pop and literary cultures. Pickles & Jams offers itself as a cornucopia of whimsy, satire, mimicry and, sandwiched between, moments of lyrical tenderness. Here then is a book of poems that track a human thinking more than planning, feeling more than plotting. Here are bursts of tactics (not strategies), wobbly selves running roughshod over British and American niceties (aesthetic, cultural, social, etc.), brandishing aphoristic wit (““As in framers of wonder but/ farmers of convention.”) and a Joycean delight in linguistic fidelity to experience (coat-tails flapping at the grubby hands of convention). In brief, no wrong notes need app here.

—Tyrone Williams


A Londoner in southwestern Ohio, poet, musician, performance artist cris cheek surveys 21st century life in the wake of Fukushima and Occupy. Channeling the buzz in the air, he stages a shimmering sequence of linguistic action. Pickles, as in difficulties. Jams likewise, but also music, a dense, sensual, wild-ass, shredding music. Burlesque humor of the dysfunctional body politic. Quick verbal combinations demonstrating subtle substitutions with a flick of the writ. Torque, twist, spin, mickey, body English. An antidote to normalization, colonialism, authority, exclusion, boredom. Check out these vibrant works and find out what’s really really real.

—Kit Robinson

The pickles are formal, riddles and riffs, the jams maybe cultural and political. Originally out of London cheek is now in his second decade in Ohio, but I hear his title as English. It refers to homegrown stanzas inventively shaped and occasionally rhymed, as if those clever origins had been run into the “designer chickens” of William Carlos Williams while Lewis Carroll caught the bus trying to escape the scene. cheek has always worked with the demotic and the found, with the surround sound of the everyday, so it’s no surprise that his new poems are more American than earlier work in their frames of reference. Indeed one poem wonders about the difference between framers and farmers, “at the convention.” Another appears to make passing reference to Descartes and then Bo Diddley in just a few lines. Dispersed subjectivities include those critical of what’s at hand and many others more tender or playful. The kind of memorable turns of phrase that experimental poetry too often avoids pass by pretty frequently: "beautiful lounge of the damned / in which i got the good peppermint.” I thought I had a handle on cheek’s practice as a performance writer and documentary poet given to expansive poems and sequences, but these little poems have left me upside down beside the fountain of post-post-objectivist lyric.

—Keith Tuma


cris cheek is a postpunk transatlantis maker and framer of playful marks with alphabetic language, with sound, with voice, with light and with the body

growing up in London is hard-wired through his circuitry:

early influences were with the Consortium of London Presses, working alongside Bob Cobbing and Bill Griffiths in the COLP printshop, and performing multi-voice pieces with PC Fencott, Lawrence Upton, and sometimes Jeremy Adler with jgjgjgjgjgjgjgjgjg (. . . as long as you can say it that’s our name)

with Marshall Reese, Kirby Malone, Patty Karl, Nora Ligorano, Chris Mason and others for the festival of disappearings arts in Baltimore

with Mary Prestidge, Kirstie Simson, Sue MacLennan, Philip Jeck, Jacky Lansley and Fergus Early at Chisenhale Dance Space in London’s east end, with book-maker poets Allen Fisher and Ulli Freer

with poet-theareticians Carla Harryman and Steve Benson

with soundart as John and Mary Outchan on Balsam Flex, with Philip Jeck and Sianed Jones, Ansuman Biswas, and Samia Malik as Slant, with Kirsten Lavers as tnwk (things not worth keeping)

with cloven

for the past dozen years cris has lived and worked in south-west ohio at miami (myaamia) university and lives in cincinnati

Book Information:

· Paperback: 114 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-273-0

$16

 
 
 

Pickles & Jams by cris cheek Book Preview  

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