Monday, February 16, 2009


was pretty fun and a great success in many ways. We had several great readings and we sold a shocking amount of books.

I was deeply impressed by the Empty Bottle reading on Thursday: the place was great (it is meant for music shows) and it was packed with an attentive audience and the other readers were very interesting as well.

Afterwards I got a ride back to the hotel from a strange group of young, wild and inter-gender women who rocked out to hip-hop and the Indigo Girls. They went to a dance and I went to a bar when a guy tried to convince me that I was gay (it's something about the way you pronounce words) and should help him pick up some girls.

Black Ocean sold over a 100 copies of the new Aase Berg, With Deer. Whenever I looked over to their table they were selling copies. And because the covers are bright orange, I could see the presence all across the bookfair.

It was a great honor when Tomaz Salamun came over to have me sign his copy and told me that it was apparently "the book of awp."

That is of course a very strange idea: a base, Bataille- and horror-movie-inspired book full of dead mammals as the representative book of the awp, but it does suggest something about the poetry world. While the room full of big booths was largely empty and while the dull panels mostly discussed "american hybrids" and other ultra-canonical, very US-centered stuff, the youngsters were busy reading Swedish grotesqueries from a very small press table run by a former undertaker.

I bought two books: three Japanese poets and Danielle Collobert's diaries (trans. Norma Cole), both from Litmus Press.

Since I'm on a selling-line-of-thought: We're all out of Port Trakl and Apostrophe is all out of my book A New Quarantine Will Take My Place, so the only ones left are the ones on SPD. If you want to get these items, scurry over there and buy the last few copies.

I'll have more things to say about this strange event. Needless to say I went to the American Hybrid panel where Cal Bedient argued for the moral and political high ground of modesty, compromise, temperance and indecision.

Having re-read the post I realize I come off as perhaps a bit braggy. I am just very happy that so many people seemed to be interested in "With Deer." More after school.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's why they call 'em "bragging rights," Johannes. Use 'em or lose 'em!

8:48 AM  
Blogger amanda said...

I thought your reading at Empty Bottle on Friday was great (sadly I missed most of Thursday). Sort of wish I hadn't preordered With Deer so I had it in my hands already.

10:25 AM  
Blogger naoko fujimoto said...

Are the three Japanese books by Sawako Nakayasu? Once I listened to her reading online. Her experimental writing/ poetry was very interesting. The sounds of her reading is like a traditional Japanese poetry, hyakunin isshu.

5:29 PM  
Blogger mark wallace said...

I don't like to play a Promote My Blog Links Linkerson character too often, but critic Michael Theune is discussing some of the implications of the Bedient-like approach in his commentary on my blog about Third Way Poetics. I hope any interested parties will stop by and engage Michael in conversation if they feel so inclined:

10:22 AM  

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