Sunday, October 16, 2016

Ed Gorman, 1941-2016

"You're a writer." -Edward Gorman, in an email several years ago.

The first fanzine I read was an issue of Science Fiction Review, a magazine edited and published by the late Richard (Dick) Geis, and that issue included among much else a bit of autobiography by Algis Budrys, a fiction-writer, editor and critic who has had rather a large influence on me; along with that essay, an interview, conducted by an impressed fan of his (and of other contributors to the literary legacy of the Fawcett Gold Medal paperback line), Edward Gorman. So that's how I was introduced to Ed, in 1978.

Like Budrys, or Geis, only perhaps even more so, Ed went ahead and did things that he clearly thought needed doing, not only establishing himself as a freelance writer, but co-founding the magazine Mystery Scene and engaged in the launch of the book-publishing house, Five Star, which have both done notable service to the field of crime fiction and beyond. He co-edited two (or, arguably, three) best crime fiction of the year annual series, and wrote well and often brilliantly in at least the fields of crime fiction, fantastic fiction (particularly horror), western fiction, and historical fiction. His editorial work has been impressive, beyond the magazine and annuals, often assembling key anthologies of crime fiction and more, not least with The Black Lizard Anthology of Crime Fiction and The Second Black Lizard Anthology of Crime Fiction, and such notable compilations as the nonfiction collection The Big Book of Noir and the interview collections Speaking of Murder and Speaking of Murder 2. 

I've never been to Cedar Rapids, his long-time home town, nor met his gracious wife Carol Gorman (though she and I have exchanged a couple of emails or direct messages); I never met Ed in person, but we did correspond publicly and privately with moderate frequency; I was able to help him out in a few minor ways over the years, as when he was trying to find out when and on which channels the film adaptation of his story "The Poker Club" was going to be first telecast in the US and Canada. And he, as I quote above, encouraged me to take my ability as a writer seriously...something I haven't really done to the extent I might. 

Gorman had more gumption than that, and as many others have noted, a generosity of spirit and desire to help others, and to preserve the legacy of those too close to being forgotten, overlooked, underappreciated, that drove his professional career...along with the desire to tell the stories with the urgency and subtle grace he brought to them. 

The Stephen Fabian cover of that SFR issue where I first read Ed's words is a grim image of someone having a hole punched in his midsection by a futuristic weapon...the tight little ache in my gut, in learning Ed had succumbed to the myeloma that had been messing with him for 15 years, was predicted all those years ago. 

All sympathies to all his family and friends who knew him better, and those he was kind to over the years. His absence is a major loss. 

Among the blog reminiscences so far: 
Bill Crider
Patti Abbott 
Sandra Seamons
Kevin Tipple
Juri Nummelin 
Jon Jordan 
James Reasoner
Jerry House
Ben Boulden
J. Kingston Pierce
David Cramner
Jake Hinkson
Lee Goldberg
Molly Duffy, obituary in The Gazette (Cedar Rapids, IA)
earlier recognition
Gerald So
Dale Jones in The Gazette (Cedar Rapids, IA) (courtesy Pierce)

Friday, October 14, 2016

Richard Lupoff letter in FANTASTIC STORY MAGAZINE, Winter 1953

An attempt at enlargement to legibility:
Hank Luttrell's scan, a bit of nostalgia/personal history for Dick...though one will have to enlarge this image to read it (unless hawk-eyed)...

FFB: Isaac Asimov, autobiographical works

Of all the writers perhaps best known for their science fiction writing, the most thoroughly autobiographied has been Isaac Asimov. There the anecdotes that introduced nearly all his 399 monthly columns, most about science or mathematics, for The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction (F&SF) (and perhaps a few in his similar work for Venture Science Fiction, Astounding Science Fiction/Analog, Science Digest and his editorials for Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine/Asimov's Science Fiction, among many others), and a slew of interviews throughout his life, he provided running autobiographical commentary in his collection The Early Asimov, the anthology Before the Golden Age, and much of the other relatively casual writing he contributed to such projects as The Hugo Winners volumes he introduced and wrote individual story introductions for. And there are the one essay and three volumes of explicit autobiography he wrote in his latter decades, as well as his collected letters (edited by his brother, Newsday editor Stanley Asimov), three retrospective collections of the range of his published work (one each to commemorate his 10oth, 200th and 300th published book, with the first volume of his autobiography Officially tied for 200th) and a final (so far) volume devoted to excerpts from his autobiographical writing with additional reminiscence by his widow, Janet Jeppson/Asimov. 

His earliest example of formal autobiography I'll deal with here is the essay he wrote for the Isaac Asimov issue of F&SF, the third in their irregular series devoting a portion of an issue to celebration of one or another major writer in the field who also has contributed notably to the magazine itself (the first two were devoted to Theodore Sturgeon and Ray Bradbury; since the Asimov, writers have ranged from Fritz Leiber through Kate Wilhelm to, most recently, David Gerrold, who might be the least F&SF-heavy of the honorees so far). Asimov's essay for that issue was "Portrait of the Writer as a Boy", and it served as a template for the Early Asimov and Before the Golden Age reminiscences cited above, as well as the seeds of the eventual book-length works. Like most of his F&SF essays, it was collected in a series of volumes for Doubleday,  this one Science, Numbers and
I (1968); my father picked up the 1969 Ace paperback reprint, and it was the first bit of science-fiction writer autobiography I remember reading. 

Asimov was soon being nudged, if not too hard, into considering writing a full-length autobiography; he reports that his usual response to such a suggestion is that his life had been exceedingly dull; he wrote. He had other jobs, most of them academic aside from his World War 2 work as a civilian and soldier, but otherwise he wrote. And it's true that relatively little of his life was devoted to much else beside his compulsion to write, and his desire to explain, and to have a reasonably good time when not writing or doing such similar activities as giving lectures or talks to audiences, and socializing in various circumstances, both among lifelong friends and acquaintances in sf/fantasy fandom, fellow writers, his academic and scientific peers, and the eventual wider circle of people who knew him to one degree or another, due to his work with the American Humanist Society or simply through the publicity attendant on his productivity and sustained popularity as a writer. 
His first near-bestseller, The Intelligent Man's Guide to Science, helped free him from any financial dependence on anything but further writing for the rest of his career, and the branching out he was able to do (into projects such as Asimov's Guide to the Bible and Asimov's Guide to Shakespeare, joke and limerick collections, other sorts of pop-history and eventually even bestselling sf novels). What he was doing throughout this period was also keeping a meticulous daily journal, a task he began as a youth and continued apparently till he could no longer, in his last months of life, as he was dying of AIDS in 1992, he apparently being one of those so unfortunate as to receive a contaminated blood transfusion. One of his last projects was to produce a third volume of autobiography, eventually published as I. Asimov, which was a somewhat more anecdotal, slightly less guarded roll through some of the same territory as his first two fat volumes, In Memory Yet Green and In Joy Still Felt, which also, of course, dealt with his life since the 1979-80 publication of the first two volumes, if not in as great detail as those had...he was writing and revising some of the third volume, and his non-fiction collaboration with Frederik Pohl, Our Angry Earth, from his hospital beds. 
As fellow F&SF columnist Algis Budrys noted in reviewing the books for the magazine, Asimov only occasionally draws great thematic lessons from the wealth of detail he provides, and doesn't dwell too obviously on some of his opinions of those closest to him...he makes no bones, in the first two volumes, about how much more he appreciated his daughter Robyn than his son David throughout their lives together, and how much happier he was with Jeppson than with his first wife, nee Gertrude Blugerman. Much of his early adulthood, and the accounts of if in all the volumes, was consumed by his fights with administrators and other sorts of boss at Columbia University, where he took his degrees, and Boston University, where he was for most of his life officially an associate professor at the medical of the small notes of triumph at the end of the second volume is that his old antagonists at the medical school had all passed from the scene, as he went from strength to strength in the outside world , and he was finally declared, with no greater requirement of time or coursework from him, a full professor of biochemistry. As Budrys also suggests, the accumulation of detail and how he manages to keep the recounting of those details lively through multiple hundreds of pages gives the reader some sense of how Asimov the man and writer worked...even when he's not so explicit as describing his plight ca. 1960, where he rather looked upon himself as a failure: not yet having had his breakaway success with the Guide to Science, still dependent on a low salary at a third-rate medical school, not happy in his marriage nor able to make his wife happy, his relations with his children a mixed bag at best, and decreasingly happy even with his work in sf, or his ability to continue to contribute to it (very much aware of his significance to the field in the '40s and '50s, but even as the decade wore on and his success began to flower in other writing, feeling himself more and more a dinosaur in the field of writing he loved best...something he wouldn't shake till the '70s, though he marked as a turning point a conversation with the ill-fated Evelyn Del Rey in the mid-'60s, when he noted his feelings of obsolescence to her, and she replied, "Isaac, when you write sf, you are the field"). Things got much better before they got worse again. 
I've yet to read the Jeppson excerpts volume, released on the tenth anniversary of Asimov's death, but I probably will, sooner or later. Having just been dipping back into the first two volumes, and finding them as easy to dig into as I did upon first reading them as a teen, I can say they are more than a useful look into Asimov himself, while of course first and foremost that. 

For more of today's books, please see Patti Abbott's blog.

Lester Del Rey (or Leonard Knapp), Evelyn Del Rey. Frederik Pohl, Carol Metcalf Ulf Pohl

Friday, October 7, 2016

Friday's Forgotten Books; the links to the reviews for 7 October 2016 (new addition)

The weekly round-up of books and related texts the contributors feel haven't yet received sufficient attention, at least (sometimes this is less true, either because the work in question has gotten its due to some degree, whether as an impressive item with a sustained reputation, or a disappointing obscurity...or even the rare item that has a much better following than it deserves.)  This week, I fill in for Patti (Patricia) Abbott, who's attending to other business; she'll probably be hosting again next week at the Pattinase blog.

Patricia Abbott: Let Him Go by Larry Watson 

Sergio Angelini: Cakes and Ale by W. Somerset Maugham

Yvette Banek: Picture Miss Seeton by Heron Carvic

Bare Bones crew: EC Comics, November 1951

Elgin Bleecker: Old Hellcat by T. T. Flynn

Brian Busby: The Keys of My Prison by Frances Shelley Wees

Bill Crider: Fantastic, February 1958, edited (after a fashion) by Paul W. Fairman

Martin Edwards: The Skeleton in the Clock by "Carter Dickson" (John Dickson Carr)

Will Erickson: Clive Barker's Shadows in Eden edited by Stephen Jones

Curt Evans: "So You're Going to Write a Mystery" by Kurt Steel; correspondence, including critique of Kurt Steel,  from Raymond Chandler

Barry Gardner: Caught in the Shadows by C. A. Haddad

John Grant: The Agony Column by Earl Derr Biggers

Rich Horton: Their Husband's Wives edited by William Dean Howells and Henry Mills Allen

Jerry House: Quicker Than the Eye by Ray Bradbury

Bernadette Inoz: The Wrong Man by Jane Jago

Margot Kinberg: The Good Boy by Theresa Schwegel

Tracy K: From Russia with Love by Ian Fleming

George Kelley: General Murders by Loren D. Estleman

Rob Kitchin: Slicky Boys by Martin Limón

B. V. Lawson: The Hand in the Glove by Rex Stout

Steve Lewis: What's in the Dark? by "Ellery Queen" (Richard Deming in this case); Post-Mark Homicide (aka The Widow Gay) by A. A. Marcus

Neer: Epitaph for a Spy by Eric Ambler

John F. Norris: recent vintage acquisitions; The Hex Murder by Forester Hazard

Mathew Paust: The Glass Character by Margaret Gunning

J. Kingston Pierce: the cover paintings of Paul Rader, as for Find My Killer by Manly Wade Wellman

James Reasoner: The Comstock Lode by Tom Curry

Richard Robinson: Superman for All Seasons by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

Gerard Saylor: Lights Out by Ted Koppel

Kevin Tipple: The Territory by Tricia Fields

"TomCat": The Moai Island Puzzle by "Alice Akutagawa" (translated by Ho-Ling Wong)

Prashant Trikannad: books by weight: a quartet

Friday, September 30, 2016

FFB Redux for Anthologies week: PARTNERS IN WONDER by Harlan Ellison and collaborators; best of the year 1978 short fiction anthologies

I've had a few too many All-Night sessions of various taxing sorts over the last few months, and last night was yet, as the most monotonously anthology (and fiction-magazine)-oriented of FFBers, a redux post of two of the reviews from past years that perhaps could use a few more eye tracks...sorry if you find them a bit slight or overfamiliar!  TM (Please see Patti Abbott's blog for the fresher examples from other contributors!)

The Contento Index:

Partners in Wonder Harlan Ellison (Walker, 1971, hc)
· Sons of Janus · in [now-dead link]
· I See a Man Sitting on a Chair, and the Chair Is Biting His Leg · Harlan Ellison & Robert Sheckley · nv F&SF Jan ’68
· Brillo · Harlan Ellison & Ben Bova · nv Analog Aug ’70
· A Toy for Juliette · Robert Bloch · ss Dangerous Visions, ed. Harlan Ellison, Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1967
· The Prowler in the City at the Edge of the World · nv Dangerous Visions, ed. Harlan Ellison, Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1967
· Scherzo for Schizoids: Notes on a Collaboration · Harlan Ellison & Avram Davidson · ms Knight Nov ’65
· Up Christopher to Madness · Harlan Ellison & Avram Davidson · ss Knight Nov ’65
· Runesmith · Harlan Ellison & Theodore Sturgeon · ss F&SF May ’70
· Rodney Parish for Hire · Harlan Ellison & Joe L. Hensley · ss Swank May ’62
· The Kong Papers · Harlan Ellison & William Rotsler · ct The Kong Papers, William Rotsler & Harlan Ellison, 1969
· The Human Operators · Harlan Ellison & A. E. van Vogt · ss F&SF Jan ’71
· Survivor No. 1 [“The Man with the Green Nose”] · Harlan Ellison & Henry Slesar · ss Knave Sep ’59
· The Power of the Nail · Harlan Ellison & Samuel R. Delany · ss Amazing Nov ’68
· Wonderbird · Harlan Ellison & Algis Budrys · ss Infinity Science Fiction Sep ’57
· The Song the Zombie Sang · Harlan Ellison & Robert Silverberg · ss Cosmopolitan Dec ’70
· Street Scene [“Dunderbird”] · Harlan Ellison & Keith Laumer · ss Galaxy Jan ’69; this story has two different endings. The version with the Ellison ending was in Galaxy, the version with the Laumer ending was in Adam Mar ’69 as “Street Scene”.
· Come to Me Not in Winter’s White · Harlan Ellison & Roger Zelazny · ss F&SF Oct ’69

There are certain books which will change your life, though usually only very slightly. This was one of those more potent ones for me, as a young reader, which more than any other early reading experience brought home the sense of a writer's life and the community of writers. It's available as an e-book, which is the source of the link to the introduction [since removed from the web, apparently], but I read the Pyramid edition with the Leo and Diane Dillon cover design pictured here, part of the series they did of Ellison paperbacks for the publisher (some reissued by Jove after the purchase). This is almost certainly the only version of an Ellison book to be blurbed with the employment of Jimmie Walker's mid-'70s catchphrase. (The painting they did for the hardcover, below, rather better.)

The stories here, in what was the first collection of collaborations between one writer and several others that Ellison was aware of (I think there was at least one previous example, but it eludes me at the moment), are a mixed lot (and include a series of cartoons with William Rotsler which struck me as Just OK even when I was ten, not Rotsler's best work in the form, certainly--though I'm still fond of Fay Wray in the clutches of the big ape as he scales the Empire State, and someone shouting up from below, "Trip him, Fay!"). Even the best of them are almost invariably not quite up to the best of either collaborator, but they do have a special flavor...even when, as with the the two stories by Robert Bloch and Harlan Ellison individually, the collaboration is more along the lines of nudging inspiration...resulting in a decent Bloch story, since his was merely commissioned for Dangerous Visions, and a rather better sequel to that story by Ellison, who was mildly obsessed with what he was asking Bloch to do (both stories being sequels to Bloch's early story "Yours Truly, Jack the Ripper," one of those stories which follow their creators around for their entire careers, and one of the most widely plagiarized stories written in the last century). The antic comedies, such as the Laumer and Davidson collaborations, are often more successful than the attempts at more serious work, but the darker humor of the Sheckley and Silverberg stories are certainly effective. And, of course, while I'd read a few Davidson stories before this book (in anthologies attributed to Hitchcock), this was the first opportunity I had to read Davidson's delightful nonfiction, in this case an acocunt of an incident that Ellison also recounts, and the comparison of the two versions is telling and extremely entertaining.

And the Bova story, "Brillo," was even ripped off for at least two tv series, though only actionably for one.

Still a valuable read, and the ancillary material might be Ellison at his best at this, at which he is one of the best.

For more "Forgotten" Books, please see Patti Abbott's blog, though updates will be delayed while she Shakespeares.

The first edition, from Walker & Co.

FFB: the best short stories of 1978 (the year I started reading new short fiction in earnest) as judged by the annual editors...

I picked up (either purchased or found in libraries) all these volumes (with the exception of the Pushcart item) back when, and I was fascinated not only by the contents themselves but also by the choices made among the short fiction published in 1978, a good chunk of which I'd read as it was offered in the magazines and original anthologies (though I didn't yet have access to little magazines--I read The Atlantic Monthly by year's end and looked at The New Yorker and some of the other newsstand titles). Looking at their contents now, I'm impressed, if  not universally, any more than I was back then, by the quality of the selection--it was a good year to start reading new short fiction in bulk, though it's usually if not always a good year to do so. It's rather telling that the fantasy (and horror) volumes have no overlap or shared stories, and neither do the eclectic/contemporary mimetic volumes, but the sf volumes certainly do. Also notable to me, as it was then, how certain books demonstrate, if not the desire to include Names at the cost of quality, then at least a certain kindness or nostalgia toward some of the writers...certainly Terry Carr, in the first two volumes of his fantasy annual, included two of the worst Stephen King stories I've least Gerald Page and Ed Hoch selected rather better, though not Year's Best, stories from King for their books. The Stephen Donaldson story was also not up to most of the rest of the Carr fantasy selections. Lin Carter likewise could let nostalgia and desire to play up Conan and such overwhelm his annual, but Arthur Saha, who would inherit the series on his own after Carter's death, probably was already being felt in this volume in some of the more innovative choices.

Multiple appearances across several volumes include those of John Varley, with four appearances of two different stories (three reprints of "The Persistence of Vision"), four appearances with three different stories for Michael Bishop and three with three for Thomas Disch (the O. Henry volume was indexed for WorldCat by a proud fellow Minnesotan), three inclusions of two stories by Gregory Benford, likewise three inclusions for two stories by Joan D. Vinge, and, as noted, three appearances with three different stories by Stephen King. It really was a very good year for Disch and Bishop amd Janet Fox.

Among the particularly brilliant stories (among many) I remember are Dennis Etchison's "The Pitch" (Horror), Bill Pronzini's "Strangers in the Fog" (Detective),  Fox's "Demon and Demoiselle" (Carter/Saha Fantasy), and Gregory Benford's squicky "In Alien Flesh" (several). John Varley's "The Persistence of Vision" certainly blew me (and the award voters) away in 1978 and into the next year, though even from the first reading it struck me as more fantasy than sf, and perhaps in more than one way (though Varley's sexual libertinism certainly struck a chord with 13yo me, and I'm somewhat in sympathy with that attitude still, with certain reservations).  Look at all that established and emerging talent in the Pushcart...and all the others...

The Year’s Best Horror Stories: Series VII ed. Gerald W. Page (DAW 0-87997-476-1, Jul ’79, $1.95, 221pp, pb)

The Year’s Finest Fantasy Volume 2 ed. Terry Carr (Berkley 0-425-04155-7, Jul ’79, $1.95, 311pp, pb); Series continued with Fantasy Annual III.

The Year’s Best Fantasy Stories: 5 ed. Lin Carter  and Arthur W. Saha (DAW 0-87997-510-5, Jan ’80, $1.95, 204pp, pb)

The 1979 Annual World’s Best SF ed. Donald A. Wollheim & Arthur W. Saha (DAW 0-87997-459-1, May ’79, $2.25, 268pp, pb)
  • 7 · Introduction · Donald A. Wollheim · in
  • 11 · Come to the Party · Frank Herbert & F. M. Busby · ss Analog Dec ’78
  • 37 · Creator · David Lake · nv Envisaged Worlds, ed. Paul Collins, Void, 1978
  • 64 · Dance Band on the Titanic · Jack L. Chalker · nv IASFM Jul/Aug ’78
  • 87 · Cassandra · C. J. Cherryh · ss F&SF Oct ’78
  • 96 · In Alien Flesh · Gregory Benford · nv F&SF Sep ’78
  • 122 · SQ · Ursula K. Le Guin · ss Cassandra Rising, ed. Alice Laurance, Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1978
  • 133 · The Persistence of Vision · John Varley · na F&SF Mar ’78
  • 181 · We Who Stole the Dream · James Tiptree, Jr. · nv Stellar #4, ed. Judy-Lynn del Rey, Ballantine, 1978
  • 206 · Scattershot · Greg Bear · nv Universe 8, ed. Terry Carr, Doubleday, 1978
  • 239 · Carruthers’ Last Stand · Dan Henderson · nv Analog Jun ’78

The Best Science Fiction of the Year # 8 ed. Terry Carr (Ballantine 0-345-28083-0, Jul ’79, $2.25, 372pp, pb)

The Best Science Fiction Novellas of the Year #1 ed. Terry Carr (Ballantine, Sep ’79, 328pp, pb)

Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year (1978) ed. Gardner R. Dozois (Elsvier-Dutton, 1979, hc); Also in pb (Dell Aug ’80).

courtesy WorldCat: 

Best detective stories of the year, 1979 ; 33rd annual collection  
edited by Edward D. Hoch. 
New York : E.P. Dutton, 1979. 209 pages

Quitters, Inc. / Stephen King --
Little paradise / Zena Collier --
The man in the lake / Ernest Savage --
Strangers in the fog / Bill Pronzini --
Delayed mail / Jack Ritchie --
Filmflam / Francis M. Nevins --
The fire man / Elizabeth A. Lynn --
The adventure of the blind alley / Edward Wellen --
The cloud beneath the eaves / Barbara Owens --
The closed door / Thomas Walsh --
Truth will out / Ruth Rendell --
Checkpoint Charlie / Brian Garfield --
Rite of Spring / Jerry Jacobson --
The golden circle / Patricia L. Schulze --
Captain Leopold Incognito / Edward D. Hoch --
The leech / Frank Sisk.

courtesy Contento/Stephensen-Payne Miscellaneous Anthologies:

The Best American Short Stories 1979 

ed. Joyce Carol Oates & Shannon Ravenel (Houghton Mifflin, 1979, tp)

[This citation in WorldCat is annoyingly shorthanded...particularly where the writer's name isn't so obvious as with Herbert Gold or Alice Adams.]
Prize stories 1979 : the O. Henry Awards  edited and with an introduction by William Abrahams. 

"Includes story by Minnesota author Thomas M. Disch."

Weaver, G. Getting serious.--
Bromell, H. Travel stories.--
Hecht, J.I want you, I need you, I love you.--
Goldberg, L. Shy bearers.--
Heller, S. The summer game.--
Pfeil, F. The quality of light in Maine.--
Leaton, A. The passion of Marco Z--.--
Thomas, A. Coon hunt.--
Molyneux, T.W. Visiting the point.--
Oates, J.C. In the autumn of the year.--
Baumbach, J. Passion?--
Zelver, P. My father's jokes.--
Gold, H. The smallest part.--
Van Dyke, H. Du Côté de Chez Britz.--
Smith, L. Mrs. Darcy meets the blue-eyed stranger at the beach.--
Caputi, A. The derby hopeful.--
Schwartz, L.S. Rough strife.--
Yates, R. Oh, Joseph, I'm so tired.--
Peterson, M. Travelling.--
Disch, T.M. Xmas.--
Adams, A. The girl across the room.  

  The Pushcart prize, IV : best of the small presses  
edited by Bill Henderson.   591 pages

Introduction : about Pushcart Prize, IV --
Home / by Jayne Anne Phillips --
From laughing with one eye / by Gjertrud Schnackenberg Smyth --
A renewal of the word / by Barbara Myerhoff --
Ice / by AI --
In another country / by James Laughlin --
The daisy dolls / by Felisberto Hernández --
Snow owl / by Dave Smith --
Lot's wife / by Kristine Batey --
The stone crab : a love poem / by Robert Phillips --
Night flight to Stockholm / by Dallas Wiebe --
Literature and ecology: an experiment in ecocriticism / by William Rueckert --
Ghosts like them / by Shirley Ann Taggart --
Elegy / by David St. John --
The ritual of memories / by Tess Gallagher --
Plowing with elephants / by Lon Otto --
Meeting Mescalito at Oak Hill Cemetery / by Lorna Dee Cervantes --
A Jean-Marie cookbook / by Jeff Weinstein --
dg The politics of anti-realism / by Gerald Graff --
Winter sleep / by Mary Oliver --
Wildflower / by Stanley Plumly --
Letters from a father / by Mona Van Duyn --
Early winter / by Max Schott --
My work in California / by James B. Hall --
The ownership of the night / by Larry Levis --
The Spanish image of death / by César Vallejo --
For Papa (and Marcus Garvey) / by Thadious M. Davis --
A vision expressed by a series of false statements / by John Love --
Jeffrey, believe me / by Jane Smiley --
Sweetness, a thinking machine / by Joe Ashby Porter --
To Ed Sissman / by John Updike --
The man whose blood tilted the earth / by M.R. Doty --
Lawrence at Taos / by Shirley Kaufman --
Contemporary poetry and the metaphors for the poem / by Charles Molesworth --
Another Margot chapter / by R.C. Day --
Sitting up, standing, taking steps / by Ron Silliman --
Made connections / by Michael Harper --
Anonymous courtesan in a jade shroud / by Brenda Hillman -
A woman in love with a bottle / by Barbara Lovell ---
Proteus / by Judith Hoover --
Quinnapoxet / by Stanley Kunitz --
Things that happen where there aren't any people / by William Stafford --
Lechery / by Jayne Anne Phillips --
Civilization and isolation / by Vine Deloria --
from Kiss of the spider woman / by Manual Puig --
Running away from home / by Carolyn Kizer --
The biography man / by Gary Reilly --
The nerves of a midwife: contemporary American women's poetry / by Alicia Ostriker --
Forgive us / by George Venn --
The hat in the swamp / by Paul Metcalf --
These women / by Christine Schutt --
Johnny Appleseed / by Susan Schaefer Neville --
Some carry around this / by Susan Strayer Deal --
The stonecutter's horses / by Robert Bringhurst --
Grandmother (1895-1928) / by Cleopatra Mathis --
Rich / by Ellen Gilchrist --
Pig 311 / by Margaret Ryan --
American poetry: looking for a center / by Ishmael Reed-
I show the daffodils to the retarded kids / by Constance Sharp --
Dream / by John Willson --
Living with animals / by Margaret Kent --
The trial of Rozhdestvov / by Russian Samizdat --
Contributors notes --
Outstanding writers --
Outstanding small presses.

For more of this week's books, 
please see Patti Abbott's blog...