Tuesday, September 30, 2003


Poet-editor and publisherJukka-Pekka Kervinen just disseminated the following press release:

xStream Issue #14 is online:

1. Regular: Works from 6 poets
(Andrew Topel, Clayton A. Couch, Charlton Metcalf, Harriet Zinnes, Eileen R. Tabios, Vernon Frazer)

2. Autoissue: Computer-generated poems from Issue #14 texts, the whole autoissue is generated in "real-time", every refresh.

Submissions are welcome, please send to



Jukka-Pekka Kervinen
WWW: http://xstream.xpressed.org
email: xstream@xpressed.org

Saturday, September 20, 2003


Marsh Hawk Press is delighted to announce that Harriet Zinnes is a featured poet at Fiera Lingue.

Anny Ballardini offers a review of Harriet's book Drawing On The Wall; here's an excerpt:

"Observation is what characterizes the poetry by Harriet Zinnes, an extremely keen insight within the analysis of all possible symbolic transformations of the focused subject/object nourished by her selective way of questioning contemporary art, as a critic and an editor. There is a conscious wish of stilling fractions of time to be able to read movements in their communicative transference, in the knowledge of the importance of each section, step, glance. And it is here that we recognize her talent, i.e. her capacity of formulating into words the slightest intuition, by enlarging it under the magnifying glass of her attentive lyrical composing, those words -- not metaphors, as she states -- incessantly build up to continuous metaphors, one out of the other, thanks to her sensitive approach."

You can read the rest of the review by going to http://www.fieralingue.it/poetcorner/corner.php?pa=printpage&pid=280.

In addition, Fiera Lingue offers three poems: "Dysfunction," "They Leave Their Homes" and "Shadow."

Do click on the links, read and enjoy!

Sunday, September 14, 2003


We are delighted to present a poem written in collaboration between Stephen Paul Miller and Thomas Fink. This is actually a more recent manifestation of a work they first began in 1990!


The chief exec is beaten up, then
takes his oath with ease
in the sixty-seventh year before the common era in the
city we love best though
               it stinks like hell and you can vomit from it,
because it’s just like industrial America. What we now call ancient
Rome. The
White House chef powders up a lethal beverage, which the chief sips
patrician grace. So when a schoolgirl emails about homelessness,
he tells his wife:
                “Oy, I have such a homelessness.”
               The first lady quips:
                “Look how popular you are
but you can’t paint your face
African American. That’s what’s so good
               about ‘African-American’ over ‘black.’”
George melts into Laura. “If I were Nixon,
I would not need a mask.
They didn’t have to like HIM.”

                A sunrise effect takes over.
                Nixon pours another glass of divine love.
               The tavern keeper changes channels.

               “You fool, don’t you know about the scarcity?”
               The Prez retorts,

“afraid of this whole
                big bad beautiful world thing.
               We stamp it out here
               and then it comes roaring out of the breast of China.
               I’m retiring; I’m tired of
                manufacturing these
               scarcity props. Let everyone be happy, for all I care.”

Sunday, September 07, 2003


Eileen Tabios, one of Marsh Hawk Press' poets, is also a publisher. Boog City features her Meritage Press (St. Helena & San Francisco, CA) to inaugurate a new reading series on non-New York small presses at ACA Galleries. Here's the event information, followed by an article on her press in the current issue of BOOG CITY periodical:


d.a. levy lives: celebrating the renegade press in America

This month’s featured press:
Meritage Press (St. Helena and San Francisco, Calif.)

Thurs. Sept. 11, 6 p.m., free

Aca Galleries
529 W.20th St., 5th Flr.

Event will be hosted by Meritage Press publisher and editor Eileen Tabios

Featuring readings from Meritage Press contributors, including:

Oliver de la Paz
Luis H. Francia
Eric Gamalinda
Sarah Gambito
Paolo Javier
Joseph O. Legaspi
Patrick Rosal

With music from Simone White

There will be free wine, cheese, and fruit.

Curated and with an introduction by Boog City editor David Kirschenbaum

Directions: C/E to 23rd St., 1/9 to 18th St.
Venue is bet. 10th and 11th avenues

For further information call 212-842-BOOG (2664) or Email editor@boogcity.com


And in the current issue of BOOG CITY, here's an article on Meritage Press written by poet Jane Sprague!

MERITAGE PRESS, St. Helena and San Francisco, CA
Publisher & Editor: Eileen Tabios

Reflecting how poets make instead of inherit language, the press is named after "meritage," a word created to describe the Bordeaux-style of wine-making that uses California-grown grapes. Meritage style combines the grapes of cabernet, cabernet franc and merlot to create a wine characterized by robustness in flavor, bouquet, color and body - symbolizing the passion underlying the vision of Meritage's artists.

Poet Eileen Tabios began publishing Meritage Press in 2001 with the intention of publishing printed matter including books, chapbooks, artist's books and broadsides while creating a performance art space to enact aesthetic explorations toward political and cultural goals. Tabios has said, "I like to mix up books with more intimate projects...I think it's because poetry, ultimately, is an intimate form."

Her vision is to have as much of a multidisciplinary approach as possible. The first publication, "Cold Water Flat," by John Yau and Archie Rand, is a limited edition etching and text collaboration (2001) followed by 100 More Jokes From The Book of the Dead, a monograph depicting an etchings-based collaboration by Yau and Rand, with an essay by Yau (2001). 100 More Jokes From The Book of the Dead garnered media coverage from The Poetry Project Newsletter, Columbia University Spectator and The Education Digest in addition to exposure it received through Rand's exhibitions. In 2002 Meritage published er, um, a limited edition chapbook of ten poems by Garrett Caples and ink drawings by Hu Xin, and a poetry e-chapbook, selections from A Museum of Absences, by Luis H. Francia (http://www.meritagepress.com/museum.pdf), which deals with the psychological and poetic aftermath of the events of September 11, 2001.

As a one-person publishing endeavor (and the assistance of a poet-intern) Tabios spends a year working on the production of each book. The latest Meritage book, OPERA: Poems 1981-2002, by Barry Schwabsky exemplifies Tabios' intent for the press, which is "to publish those who otherwise may not ever be published, a difficulty beyond the general poetry threshold difficulty. In (Schwabsky's) case, this is a poet who's been invisible in the poetry scene for over a decade, despite a brilliant start by being published in POETRY at age 19! OPERA encompasses 21 years of writing which occurred outside of any poetry scenes, having been developed mostly in private."

OPERA is a remarkable book. Ideas of song, language play, and delicate negotiations of desire and love create poetry deft and strange- strangely beautiful and bound with dual meanings, the piecing apart of things, of language, of the unsaid, the left out, the impossible to contain. From the title poem, "Opera":

Corrected hair. Face smooth
as mirror. Unsurpassable song.
Living death. Unhanded. Unhanded.
Theatrical weeping. "He" becomes "she"
and "you" becomes "he" and "we"
becomes "we" becomes "we" becomes "we."
Pears shaped like apples. Pears
that taste like apples that taste like grapes. (10)

Schwabsky pairs words with their opposite and twins images that resonate in the ear and on the page. Words are repeated, then altered, then paired again or broken apart newly, revealing other hidden/revealed aspects of the voices between this "we" grappling with the doubleness of desire and experience and their (our) shared complications. The final poem:


Favorable moonlight
in all directions. Don't try
and make it real. You'll never have that experience
long enough to write about. Someone else's voice

will have to burn with it. You keep
starting something you don't know how to stop
but it stops. (102)

The doubleness of love, desire, of thinking in language, emotion and image in simultaneity and how to reconcile aspects of "we" among others, of individuals in the blur of longing where boundaries mesh, dissolve, break and give way to something more: those moments of "the nothing / but desire / you've seen / I am." (45)

The next Meritage endeavor is its new imprint, BABAYLAN, a Bisayan word that can be translated to mean Poet-Priestess. "The Babaylans were storytellers, healers and community leaders in the Philippines whose positions were disrupted by the invasion of Spanish colonizers over four centuries ago. BABAYLAN resurrects itself in the 21st century to facilitate the dissemination of Filipino literature. (meritagepress.com/about)

Through BABAYLAN, Tabios plans to publish PINOYPOETICS, an anthology of English-language Filipino poets discussing their poetics, edited by Nick Carbo, scheduled for release in 2004.

Meritage Press books are available through Small Press Distribution (SPD) and directly from the publisher at: http://www.meritagepress.com

Wednesday, September 03, 2003


NewPages Book Review Section recently posted a wonderful review of Jane Augustine's Arbor Vitae. If you haven't already, read Jane's book to discover why reviewer Devon Ellington says: "Every poem in the collection is a unique, beautiful gem to treasure. This is a book to carry around and pull it out in times of stress or times of quiet contemplation. Re-read it for years. It will continue to be relevant to the moment and reveal something new with each visitation."

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