Sunday, December 25, 2011
Notes on Sea and Shore was our best-selling book this year, and it will shortly enter its second printing.
Happy holidays, and check back with us in 2012 for several exciting new releases, including full-length collections by Nelly Sachs, William Stafford, Eunice Odio, Tomas Tranströmer, David Wevill, and Ferenc Juhász, among others!
Monday, December 5, 2011
Saturday, December 3, 2011
One of the many (and there are many) conversations to be had in light of this recent attack is the role of the editor vs. the role of the taste-maker. At the heart of Dove vs. Vendler is a simple and important division that has enormous implications for anyone in the editorial world. Dove's editorial lens is that of the individual writer, reader, and admirer; her anthology is assembled through one set of eyes, those of Rita Dove. Vendler's stance is that of the self-appointed protector of the group, which, in this case, is a small handful of American poets Vendler considers the only worthy of exaltation and critical discourse. If poetry is the art of the individual voice and the world that voice represents, then it seems Dove has done excellent work. Vendler's attitude suggests something more sinister and colonial: that poetry is a gated community, a pay-to-play social club where only one opinion and attitude (and, so it seems, race) is favored. Vendler's attitude implies that the anthologist, editor, or critic has a kingly and elevated right and power to define what is worthy and, by omission, to define what is unworthy. Dove's attitude is that an editor is one voice tasked to highlight other individual voices, and that this representation is a leaping-off point into further conversation, not an arriving point of definition or ascension into the canon (whatever that is). Wallace Stevens knew all too well that there are not merely thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird, but that the avenues into perception and art are indeed numerous and numinous.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
When we think of Tavern Books, we think of it as an ongoing and expanding anthology, a catalog that represents the kinds of poets and poetry from around the world that deserve inclusion in what we've termed The Living Library.
Happy reading, and check back often. We have over a dozen exciting full-length paperbacks under contract and in the production queue.
Of course, we couldn't be doing this without all of the incredible support we've received from individuals, publishers, and institutions. Just this week we received 2 boxes of amazing poetry books in pristine shape from Lannan Foundation.
And we're just getting started. As this program continues to develop, we will add another page to our website with a list of libraries that are participating in our program, as well as a list of all the good folks who have donated books, time, and money to this very worthwhile cause.
We want everyone to have access to poetry books, no matter where they live or how small their local public libraries may be.
Click here for more information about this project. And remember, no donation is too small. Every book and every dollar counts.
Cheers, and heartfelt thanks to those who have supported this book drive with the gift of books and financial donations.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
For the Living and the Dead is the fourth and final Tranströmer book we're publishing this year. This book is available for pre-order through our website--click here for more details. Also available is a broadside featuring an excerpt from Tranströmer's poem "Six Winters."
On For the Living and the Dead, translator John F. Deane notes:
Tranströmer's power with imagery is unsurpassed; a poem of his gathers disparate images from several sources and offers a poetry that is immensely rich, deep and wide-ranging. The imagery remains true to the actual world and yet discovers mysteries that touch on a universal human memory. His power emanates from such conjunctions, going beyond what he calls the “truth barrier.” His work honours his native Sweden and yet ranges the world... His is a deeply human and resonating voice, capacious, exciting, and immensely readable.
Friday, October 28, 2011
Tomas Tranströmer published this groundbreaking collection in 1974. In this book-length poem, Tranströmer creates a literal and figurative landscape where his family history becomes the psychological, perhaps even the spiritual, history of the poet himself. Time, geography, a family, an island, a country, the labor of seamanship - these elements, and so many more, show a voice whose multiplicities and conjunctions intertwine to resemble something like the layers of a symphony, a symphony of narrative, of the minimal, the liminal, the image, collisions, and fragments.
Baltics, as its plural name suggests, is an experiment in the conflation of time, a theme that has come to define Tranströmer's career as a poet. Out of print for nearly 40 years, this new edition contains a revised translation, a new afterword and translator's note, a series of photographs by Ann Charters, and the original Swedish text en face.
Of this new and expanded edition of Balitcs, Michael Burkard comments:
"It is especially moving to me now, with Tomas Tranströmer having just won the Nobel Prize in Literature, to have the generous and far-reaching Baltics available again, and in such a keen translation. Tomas Tranströmer leaves an indelible mark upon readers everywhere. The gifts of his poems are offered generously and without conditions. I cannot think of another poet who has left more lasting impressions - impressions which never cease, but instead keep creating new spheres of realities and imaginations. He is constantly a poet of nearness. We need Tomas Tranströmer's poetry as much, if not more, in this 21st century as we needed it in the last."
We hope to have this book printed by early January. Click here to make a pre-order. Cheers!
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
translated from the German by Eavan Boland
Baltics by Tomas Tranströmer,
translated from the Swedish by Samuel Charters
with photographs by Ann Charters
The Wounded Alphabet: Collected Poems Volume I: 1963-1983
by George Hitchcock
Glowing Enigmas by Nelly Sachs,
translated from the German by Michael Hamburger
Collected Poems: Volume One by David Wevill
Fire Water World and Among the Dog Eaters
by Adrian C. Louis
Collected Poems: Volume Two by David Wevill
The Fire’s Journey: Volume One by Eunice Odio,
translated from the Spanish by Keith Ekiss
with Sonia P. Ticas and Mauricio Espinoza
We Women by Edith Södergran,
translated from the Swedish by Samuel Charters
Selected Poems by Ferenc Juhász,
translated from the Hungarian by David Wevill
Who Whispered Near Me by Killarney Clary
Winterward by William Stafford
The Wounded Alphabet: Collected Poems Volume II: 1984-2010
by George Hitchcock
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Tomas Tranströmer worked for several years as a psychologist for juvenile delinquents. In 1959 he visited his colleague Åke Nordin, who was also a poet, at the Hällby youth prison in the southern part of Sweden. Later that year he sent Nordin a sequence of nine haiku, giving his impressions of the prison milieu. These poems were rediscovered in 2001 and are presented here in a bilingual edition.
This book was first published as a limited-edition letterpress chapbook in Sweden by Edda Edition in 2001. In this new bilingual edition, we are proud to bring you the original text plus an additional essay by Jonas Ellerström that traces the roots of the poems as well as the relationship between Åke Nordin and Tomas Tranströmer. This unique and wonderful collection, translated by Malena Mörling, will add a new glimpse into the life and work of one of the world's most celebrated poets.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Friday, October 7, 2011
Our 15th Tavern Books title!
In case you missed the great news, the Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature. The timing for this new Tavern Books title couldn't be better! We are thrilled that Tomas Tranströmer is the 2011 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature, and we are equally thrilled to be publishing this amazing book. Here are the details:
This book collects two separate but related works, each translated for the first time into English by the noted poet Malena Mörling.
Tomas Tranströmer’s First Poems is a critical study by Jonas Ellerström that examines the connection between the poetry Tranströmer wrote as a teenager and the poetry that appeared in his first book, 17 Dikter (17 Poems). As requested by Tomas Tranströmer, the ten poems featured in Ellerström’s essay are never to be included in Tranströmer’s Collected Poems, making this publication the only venue in English where one can read the Nobel Laureate’s juvenilia.
The second piece in this volume, Notes From the Land of Lap Fever, is a lyrically driven personal essay written and published by Tranströmer in 1953. Like much of the poet’s work, this essay showcases a man in search of meaning, a writer whose journey into Lapland begins: “So, I’ve listened long enough to this timid cry from the wilderness. I am going back there perhaps to retrieve a part of myself I might have left behind.”
We've also printed a broadside with an excerpt from Note's From the Land of Lap Fever. Here's a link.
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Many heartfelt thanks to those of you who have sent us books for our book drive for rural and tribal Oregon Libraries. To date, we have received over 1,000 books of poetry from poetry lovers of every stripe: book dealers, book collectors, poets, professors, editors, students, novelists, community activists, literacy advocates...and the list goes on.
If you're not familiar with this project, then please read on. Here's the gist:
Please join Tavern Books in building and sustaining the poetry collections in Oregon’s rural and tribal libraries. Paulann Petersen, Oregon’s current Poet Laureate, has made our book drive a priority for her upcoming term as our state’s poet. The libraries benefiting from this program are those who serve communities of 5,000 or fewer. You can support this book drive by sending us your used or new poetry books, poetry anthologies, and books pertaining to poetry and poetics. No donation is too large or too small. Every book counts! We will acquire these books and redistribute them to participating rural and tribal libraries. Tavern Books is committed to making great works of poetry available to the reading public. Thank you for your support.
Feel free to send your book donations to:
attn: Carl Adamshick
20 NE 30th Avenue
Friday, September 16, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
"My profession is a gardener. I do underground work on plants."
Cheers, and happy reading!
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Friday, September 9, 2011
For those looking to buy a copy of Blue Rust, you can do so by ordering directly from Carnegie Mellon University Press.
Cheers, and congratulations to Joseph!
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
"Zubair Ahmed is the kind of poet that reminds me to keep my heart open and the door to my soul unlocked. In one poem Mr. Ahmed writes, 'I walk these hallways with an arrow in my tongue.' I would follow this poet down any hallway in the world."
Thursday, September 1, 2011
Cheers, and happy reading!
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Also, we'll be getting proofs for Zubair Ahmed's book Ashulia this week. We'll let you know when this hits the shelves.
Friday, August 12, 2011
Thursday, August 11, 2011
One project we're particularly excited about is building and sustaining the poetry collections in rural Oregon libraries as well as the libraries and/or community centers of Oregon’s indigenous peoples. You can help us get these projects rolling by sending us your used or new poetry books, poetry anthologies, and books pertaining to poetry and poetics. No donation is too large or too small. Every book counts! We will acquire these books and redistribute them to rural libraries and indigenous communities. Tavern Books is committed to making great works of poetry available to the reading public.
Feel free to send your book donations to:
attn: Carl Adamshick
20 NE 30th Avenue
Many thanks! Feel free to forward this link to anyone who might take an interest. Cheers, and happy reading!
Sunday, August 7, 2011
We are thrilled to announce that we'll be printing Hitchcock's posthumous work 6-Minute Poems sometime this fall. 6-Minute Poems will collect the final poems George was writing as he entered his 96th year.
For further reading, check out the Hitchcock omnibus One-Man Boat edited by Robert McDowell and Joseph Bednarik (Story Line Press, 2003). Click here to read Mr. Hitchcock's New York Times obituary.
Sunday, July 31, 2011
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Also added to the catalog are new broadsides by Natan Zach, Zubair Ahmed, and Yosa Buson.
Currently in the works are books by Else Lasker-Schüler (Eavan Boland, trans.), Tomas Tranströmer (Samuel Charters, trans.), and David Wevill.
Cheer's and happy reading!
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Hot off the press is Peter Everwine's translation of Natan Zach's early selected poems, The Countries We Live In. We should receive those books from the printer in the next two weeks.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Among the Red Dragonfly roster: John Balaban, Marianne Boruch, Stephen Crane, Abderrahmane Djelfaoui, Louise Erdrich, Albert Goldbarth, Dorianne Laux, Barry Lopez, W. S. Merwin, Yannis Ritsos, and Michael Waters.
Featured here is Bestiary, a book from Tavern author Joseph Millar.
Friday, April 1, 2011
If you're interested in underwriting a title, please contact us for more info: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to support the press, but only have the few crumpled dollars you pulled out of your Levi's before doing the laundry, then you can donate ANY amount, no matter how small, via the secure donation button on our website. Everyone at the press works for free. We run Tavern Books out of our love for print culture, poetry in translation, and the revival of out-of-print works. It's been our rule from the get-go that each and every penny we get will go exclusively and entirely into the printing costs of our books.
Cheers, and continued thanks for your support!
Friday, February 18, 2011
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Yannis Ritsos, David Wevill, Paul Merchant, Greta Wrolstad, Gwyneth Lewis, Jo McDougall, Ferenc Juhász, W. S. Di Piero, Leonardo Sinisgalli, Joseph Millar...and more to come.
All of these broadsides are printed on 8.5" x 5.5" 80# cardstock. These full-color keepsakes feature the cover art (the handiwork of our own Cecilia Yang) and sample poem from each of our Tavern titles. The best part: they cost a mere $4. A set of all 8 can be purchased for $20. Cheers!
Thursday, February 10, 2011
To the pilgrim crossing its frontiers,
coming down through the Alburni pass
or following the sheep path on the slopes of the Serra,
to the kite snapping the horizon line
with a snake in its claws, to the emigrant, to the soldier,
whoever comes back from refuge or exile or sleeps
in sheep pens, to the shepherd, sharecropper, salesman,
Lucania opens its parched plains,
its valleys where rivers crawl
like rivers of dust.
The spirit of silence spreads everywhere
in my grieving province. From Elea to Metaponto,
sophistical and golden, baffling and shy,
it drinks holy oil in churches, goes hooded
in houses, dresses like a monk in caves, grows
with grass on the outskirts of old crumbling villages.
The sun slanting on laurel, the good
bighorned sun, tongue of sweet light,
sun greedy for children, here in the piazzas!
It slogs along like an ox, on the grass
and stones it leaves enormous stains
swarming with ghosts.
Land of huge mamas, of fathers dark
and radiant as skeletons, overrun by roosters
and dogs, woods and limestone, lean
land where the grain toils miserably
(wheat, corn, semolina)
and the wine is dark and chewy
(mint from Agri, basil from the Basento!)
and olives taste of oblivion,
flavor of sorrow.
In tinderbox volcanic air
the trees weirdly pulse and breathe,
Oaks fatten with heaven’s essence.
Rubble lies untouched for centuries:
nobody dares overturn a stone, fearing the horror.
I know hell’s navel lies under every stone.
It takes a boy to lean over the edge
of the abyss and scoop nectar
from shoot-clusters swarming with mosquitoes
I’ll come back, alive under your red rain,
I’ll come back, guiltless, to beat the drum,
to tie my mule to the gate,
to catch snails in the garden.
Will I see the smoking stubble, the brushwood,
the ditches? Will I hear the blackbird singing
under the beds, and the cat
singing on the tombs?
Translated by W. S. Di Piero
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
"The bar is set high but The Meat Tree, Gwyneth Lewis's gripping and intelligent exploration of the fourth branch of the Mabinogi, Blodeuwedd's tale, does not disappoint."
"Gwyneth Lewis's astute handling to time... enables her to combine the archetypal themes of myth with concerns that preoccupy our twenty-first century consciousness. Power, morality, man and nature, gender relations, art and reality, and above all, notions of separation and exile, heritage and loss, are refracted through the prism of a spatially and temporally distant future, constantly in motion against both our own present and the mythic Blodeuwedd past. These temporal shifts are matched by Lewis's fearless mixing of the modes of poetry, prose and drama in her quest to conjure a world that will resonate long after the tale has ended, in the reader's mind."
"The successful recreation of myth requires a wiliness that exceeds that of the original mythmakers, and Lewis patiently and skillfully demonstrates that willingness in presenting to her readers 'the battle between meat and magic, between body and imagination.'"
"'What kind of being does a virtual world create?' asks Gwyneth Lewis's Campion. 'If two negatives make a positive, then can two virutals make an actual? Have we just conjured up a person who's real? Or one who is death?' Such thoughtful probing of existential and artistic issues shows a significant respect for the challenge that the Seren project presents to its writers."
Monday, February 7, 2011
Friday, January 21, 2011
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Cheers! --The Editors