Distribution Automatique

Saturday, September 8

Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino

has been interviewing me over the past couple of years. I can't begin to express the gratitude I feel for the hard work he has put into this, his patience and generosity. The interview is now up at The Argotist Online. Thanks also to the publisher, Jeffrey Side. The site also has a number of articles by GVST, other interviews conducted by him, including one with Colin Wilson, and some of his poetry. There are interviews on the site with Charles Bernstein, Ron Silliman, Marjorie Perloff, Hank Lazer, Jack Foley, Joanne Kyger in conversation with Simon Pettet and many others and a rich poetry section as well, here:
The Argotist Online
"It Gives No Help..."

"if I am shocked at the undeserved suffering in the world, that shock is not thinking. Here is a little book of verse, the work of one well skilled in his art, but it is simply the shock and nothing more. Much of modern literature is of the same kind and it is worthless. It gives no help."

*Last Pages of a Journal* by Mark Rutherford (Oxford University Press, 1915)

Thursday, September 6

An Actor Compares

Michael Lally (Lally's Alley) posts an insider view of Delpy's excellent *Two Days in Paris*, a movie dumbly panned by a some myopic critics.


TEXT LOSES TIME by Nico Vassilakis

(pre-ordering info)

ManyPenny Press is pleased to announce the release of TEXT LOSES TIME by Nico Vassilakis. This necessary work spans roughly 15 years of the author's efforts in both textual and visual writing. It is Vassilakis' first full-length book.

Afterword by Nick Piombino
188 pp.
ISBN-10: 0-9798478-0-X
ISBN-13: 978-0-9798478-0-6


ManyPenny Press
1111 E. Fifth St.
Moscow, ID 83843

$15.95 + $2 postage
(Advance orders will receive the book post-paid.)


This book intends to present both verbal and visual poetries as equal. Though notions of poetics have shifted and swerved, what has stayed solid throughout is that the alphabet, the word - however arranged - contains, within it, dual significance. First, the proto-historic role of the visual conveyance of represented fact. Second, the overriding desire of human utterance to substantiate existence. In conjoining these two models this book hopes to form a third, blurred value. Thought and experience are factors that accrue, while staring and writing help resolve and conclude. Text itself is an amalgam of units of meaning. As you stare at text you notice the visual aspects of letters. As one stares further, meaning loses its hierarchy and words discorporate and the alphabet itself begins to surface. Shapes, spatial relations and visual associations emerge as one delves further. Alphabetic bits or parts or snippets of letters can create an added visual vocabulary amidst the very text one is reading. One aim, to this end, is to merge and hinge visual and textual writing into workable forms. This book collects some of these experiments.



The Rhymes of Vellum

A boy or girl, Vellum, blows a few papers in the wind It answers noise Hopping, hopped. Tapping, tapped Swim sweet twins swing twig Think of losing, serendipity or the wings of a sentence He will get them, but not tell you where they were I like to drink through my brother's center A finger's rose begins A shadow grows down the sidewalk Clapping, clapped
It helps to rip this box open Sound harbor, sound hole Blind rose is a very shape friend I want a shirt to visit my slacks Moon noose soon loose A good look at the cookbook - lots of o's - ghost epaulets on the shoulders of a paragraph Dishes mixes, buses guesses I sit down to work; I draw with my right hand The response sadly is never Living as wide as it gets Think sift You could fault the long moth, the dog lost in soft fog, but it's the song's cost, its crust I got frogs in my throat, a forehead throat Boris said, "Your throat's red." Timothy hums a nail into the wood I run uphill swimming The test isn't over The floor's hard The new girl at school Can you look at a book without getting caught on a line? Like radio, writing is a broadcast They found people in the mailbox A huge gem in a cage Susan flips back to the glossary Only a certain type of fastener The letter "R" in each corner of a page Unexpectedly the middle is empty Next, write your best trick Most banjo. Odd pretty piece asleep A drum whisking discard into cream In this way we raise our pigs on fire & Kenny is always six yards old The donkey said, "Enough." The donkey said, "English." Dark thoughts won't cure light sickness The ladder moved slightly throws the world in disarray The teacher's a bird and flies out the window They had found their clown center Art will say, "I like to pitch. What is your name?" Art will say, "Hi, I'm Art. I like to pitch. What's your name?" Slowly toward a large bird Paper hats, cats A lot of noise comes to visit Long thin water in a line of people I called you once today to say geese make a village of gold & both of my little friends like to sing. Their secret voices are beautiful Spray Spray Spray


"Part nested Minimalist cubes and part laser light that won't diverge across distance, Nico Vassilakis' poetry seems to ask whether we are primates at play on a baseball diamond of memory and desire beside mural-lined public structures slipping toward infinite regression.

Richly iterative, these pairings and alphabets escape the mirror to thrill us with variation and sting all forms of complacency. Vassilakis extends Oulipian strategies: Perec references, lamellisections, crystalline build-outs and transpositions, a scat of nonrepresentational vocables, lettered whirlwinds giving speed for legibility, -- "extracting the gem through layers of gauze" and, other times, lowering a gem into a fold.

Can an argument between a machine that produces texts and "longhand into tiny notebooks" wake us up? In pain, "the throbbing thumb" makes us "attend to the living."

If Vassilakis revises the rock lyric "meet-the-new-boss, same-as-the-old-boss" to "meet the solipsistic era. same as the old
solipsistic era," is treatment to be had in a bar, a science lab, or will it reach us over the radio? Try a road trip, so "you can't afford to blink, to be blind for even a second" going through a colander out where dust is breeding and "glass traps lighting" like no scene you've seen in quite this way. Through crevices, perforations, punctures, piercings, pinholes, see
neighborhoods as "that place where organized sleeping happens." So, look for a faceted colony that "sometimes congeals.""
--Deborah Meadows

"Nico Vassilakis' Text Loses Time unhinges the folds of the book and the word; as the 'folded loose leafed sheets whiz past your ears' you can hear the echoes of meaning. The words flake off the page like aged paint leaving a patina of colour and meaning on the surface and a growing heap of signification at our feet. Here the means of writing rise up and turn
against our expectation, lurching into new spaces. Letters become tactile, meaning becomes rubbery, and both reading and writing become a new collaboration."
--derek beaulieu


Nico Vassilakis was born in New York City in 1963. He has co-written and performed a one-man play about experimental composer Morton Feldman. Vassilakis is co-founder and curator for the Subtext Reading Series and editor of Clear-Cut: Anthology (A Collection of Seattle Writers). He has been a guest-editor of WOS#35: Northwest Concrete and Visual Poetry and his visual poetry videos have been shown worldwide at festivals and exhibitions of innovative language arts. In 1998, Vassilakis co-produced, with Rebecca Brown, a 24-hour "Gertrude Stein-a-thon." His work has appeared in numerous magazines, including Ribot, Caliban, Aufgabe, Chain, Talisman, Central Park and Golden Handcuffs Review. He works for Fantagraphic Books and lives in Seattle with his son, Quixote.


Askew (bcc press), Stampologue (RASP), Orange: A Manual (Sub Rosa Press), Diptychs: Visual Poems (Otolith), Pond Ring (nine muses books), sequence (Burning Press), Enoch and Aloe (Last Generation Press), The Colander (housepress), Flattened Missive (P.I.S.O.R. Publications), Species Pieces (gong press), KYOO (Burning Press) and others.

CONCRETE: Movies (Sub Rosa Press)


ManyPenny Press
1111 E. Fifth St.
Moscow, ID 83843

$15.95 + $2 postage
(Advance orders will receive the book post-paid.)


Wednesday, September 5


Waiting and thinking are enemies because when you are waiting you can think of nothing except what you are waiting for.


Suspense is fascinating - when it concerns what is happening to someone else.