Tag Archives: Fran Herndon

Robin Blaser

Robin Francis Blaser (May 18, 1925 – May 7, 2009) was born in Denver, Colorado, he grew up in Idaho, and came to Berkeley, California, in 1944. There he met Jack Spicer and Robert Duncan, becoming a key figure in the San Francisco Renaissance of the 1950s and early 1960s. He moved to Canada in 1966, joining the faculty of Simon Fraser University; after taking early retirement in the 1980s, he held the position of Professor Emeritus.

Blaser is also well known as the editor of The Collected Books of Jack Spicer, which includes Blaser’s essay, The Practice of Outside. The 1993 publication The Holy Forest represents his collected poems to that date.

In 2006, Blaser received a special Lifetime Recognition Award given by the trustees of the Griffin Trust for Excellence in Poetry, which also awards the annual Griffin Poetry Prize. Blaser won the Prize itself in 2008.


Section A:
Books and Broadsides

A1. APPARITORS
First edition:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press 1963
Broadside, 13″ x 20″, 300 copies, signed by the author and artist. Illustration by Fran Herndon.

Issued as part of the 17th Annual San Francisco Arts Festival: A Poetry Folio 1963, which contained 8 broadsides in a paper folio.

A2. Blaser, Robin. THE MOTH POEM
a. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Open Space, December 1964
Side-stapled and glued into printed wrappers, 5.5″ x 8.25″, 32 pages, 288 copies, letterpress printed by Graham Mackintosh. (Johnston A21)

b. First edition, hand-colored copies:
San Francisco: Open Space, December 1964
Side-stapled and glued into printed wrappers, 5.5″ x 8.25″, 32 pages, 12 copies with hand-colored end papers by the author, letterpress by Graham Mackintosh. (Johnston A21)

c. Second edition:
San Francisco: Open Space, December 1964
Side-stapled and glued into printed wrappers, 5.5″ x 8.25″, 32 pages, 288 copies, offset printed in letterpress wrappers by Graham Mackintosh. (Johnston A23)

A3. LES CHIMERES
a. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Open Space, 1965
Saddle-stapled printed wrappers, 5.5″ x 8.25″, 32 pages, 500 copies, letterpress printed.
(Johnston A27)

b. First edition, hardcover copies:
San Francisco: Open Space, 1965
Hardcover in printed dust jacket, 5.5″ x 8.25″, 32 pages, 26 lettered and signed copies, letterpress printed.
(Johnston A27)

A5. CUPS
a. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Four Seasons Foundation, 1968
Stapled printed wrappers, 24 pages, 1000 copies, letterpress printed. Published as Writing 17.

b. First edition, hardcover copies:
San Francisco: Four Seasons Foundation, 1968
Hardcover, 24 pages, 40 numbered and signed copies, letterpress printed. Published as Writing 17.

A6. IMAGE NATIONS 1-12 & The Stadium of the Mirror
London: Ferry Press, 1974

A7. Image Nations 13 & 14
North Vancouver: Cobblestone Press, 1975

A8. Harp Trees
Vancouver: Sun Stone House & Cobblestone Press, 1977

A9. Image Nation 15: The Lacquerhouse
Vancouver: W. Hoffer, 1981

A10. Syntax
Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1983

A11. The Faerie Queene and The Park
Vancouver: Fissure Books, 1987

A12. Pell Mell
Toronto: Coach House Press, 1988

A13. The Holy Forest
Toronto: Coach House Press, 1993

A14. Nomad
Vancouver: Slug Press, 1995

A15. Wanders, with Meredith Quartermain
Vancouver: Nomados, 2002


References consulted:

Alastair Johnston. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE WHITE RABBIT PRESS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press in association with Anacapa Books, 1985

Auerhahn Press: Broadsides

>> return to AUERHAHN PRESS main page >>

This index includes Auerhahn Press broadsides from 1959 through 1965.

B. Auerhahn Press: Broadsides

1. Whalen, Philip. SELF-PORTRAIT FROM ANOTHER DIRECTION
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
First edition, folded broadside tipped into printed wrappers, broadside measures 9″ x 19.5″ unfolded. Whalen’s first book and the third from Auerhahn. Handset and printed by Jay McIlroy and Dave Haselwood.

2. Page, David. BABYWHIPLAND
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1961
First edition, broadside folded once as issued, 5.25″ x 7.5″ (5.25″ by 15″ when open), 350 copies.




3. Duncan, Robert. A BOOK OF RESEMBLANCES
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, n.d.
First edition, broadside, 8″ x 15.5″, illustrated by Jess





4. Blaser, Robin. APPARITORS
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press 1963
First edition, broadside, 13″ x 20″, 300 copies, illustrated by Fran Herndon, signed by the author and artist.



5. Shelley, Percy Bysshe. A VALENTINE FROM THE AUERHAHN
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, [1964]
First edition, broadside, 7.25″ x 4″.


6. Whalen, Philip. GODDESS
(San Francisco): Auerhahn Press, December 1964
First edition, broadside, 8 1/2″ x 12″, 125 copies.





7. Welch, Lew. RICHER THAN THE RICHEST FALCONER
(San Francisco): Auerhahn Press, (1965)
First edition, broadside, 9.5″ by 15.5″, 125 copies printed for Don Carpenter.

Auerhahn Press: Books & Pamphlets

>> return to AUERHAHN PRESS main page >>

This index includes Auerhahn Press publications from 1958 through 1965: from Dave Haselwood’s first publishing venture through the dissolution of his partnership with Andrew Hoyem and the end of Auerhahn Press.

A. Auerhahn Press: Books & Pamphlets

1. Wieners, John. THE HOTEL WENTLEY POEMS
wieners_wentley1
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1958
First edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 7.75″, 20 pages, circa 500 copies. Printed—and edited without prior notice to Dave Haselwood—by East West Printers. Cover photo by Jerry Burchard. Illustration by Robert La Vigne. Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 1)

2. Wieners, John. THE HOTEL WENTLEY POEMS
wieners_wentley2
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
Second revised edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 7.75″, 20 pages, 500 copies. Cover photo by Jerry Burchard. Illustration by Robert La Vigne.
(Auerhahn 2)

3. Lamantia, Philip. EKSTASIS
lamantia_ekstasisSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
First edition, perfect-bound wrappers, 5.75″ x 7″48 pages, circa 950 copies. Titling by Robert La Vigne. Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 3)


4. McClure, Michael. HYMNS TO ST. GERYON…
mcclure_hymnsSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
First edition, perfect-bound illustrated wrappers, 7.25″ x 10″, 62 pages, 950 copies. Cover illustration by McClure.
(Clements A4, Auerhahn 4)


5. Lamantia, Philip and Antonin Artaud. NARCOTICA
lamantia_narcotica
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1959
First edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 8.5″, 16 pages, 750 copies. Cover photographs by Wallace Berman. Published as “Auerhahn Pamphlet No. 1”. Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 5)

6. Whalen, Philip. MEMOIRS OF AN INTERGLACIAL AGE
whalen_memoirsSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1960
— A. First edition, perfect-bound in illustrated wrappers, 8.75″ x 11.25″, 64 pages, (1250 copies). Cover illustration by Robert La Vigne.
— B. First edition, hardcover, 8.75″ x 11.25″, 64 pages,  (60 copies with 25 signed and another 15 signed with holograph poem and illustration), bound by the Schuberth Bindery. Cover illustration by Robert La Vigne.
Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 6)

7. Welch, Lew. WOBBLY ROCK
lew_wobblySan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1960
First edition, saddle-stapled printed wrappers, 6″ x 8″, 12 pages, 500 copies, illustrated by Robert LaVigne. Dedication: for Gary Snyder / “I think I’ll be the Buddha of this place” / and sat himself / down
(Auerhahn 7)

8. Burroughs, William S. and Brion Gysin. THE EXTERMINATOR
burroughs_exterminator
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1960
First edition, perfect-bound in illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 9.25″, 64 pages, (1000 copies). Illustrated by Brion Gysin. Printed announcement issued.
(Maynard & Miles A4, Auerhahn 8)

9. Marshall, Edward. HELLAN, HELLAN
marshall_hellanSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1960
First edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6″ x 8.75″, 24 pages, (750 copies). Illustrated by Robert Ronnie Branaman. Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 10)

10. McClure, Michael. DARK BROWN
mcclure_darkbrownSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1961
— A. First edition, perfect-bound printed wrappers, 6″x 9″, 56 pages, 725 copies.
— B. First edition, hardcover, 6″ x 9″, 56 pages, 25 numbered and signed copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery.
Printed announcement issued.
(Clements A9, Auerhahn 13)

11. Olson, Charles. MAXIMUS FROM DOGTOWN
olson_maximusSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1961
First edition, hand-sewn printed wrappers, 9″ x 11.25″, 12 pages, 500 copies. Foreword by Michael McClure.
(Auerhahn 14)


12. Reps, Paul. GOLD FISH SIGNATURES
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1961
— A. First edition, Japanese binding, 8.5″ x 11″, 84 pages, (1000 copies).
— B. First edition, Japanese binding, 8.5″ x 11″, 84 pages, (50 copies in slipcase), signed.
Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 15)

13. THE AUERHAHN PRESS CATALOGUE
auerhahn_catalogueSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
First edition, saddle-stapled printed wrappers, 4″x 5″, 16 pages includes poems by Wieners and Meltzer.
(Auerhahn 17)


14. Lamantia, Philip. DESTROYED WORKS
lamantia_destroyedSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
— A. First edition, perfect-bound illustrated wrappers, 7″ x 8.75″, 48 pages, 1250 copies.
— B. First edition, hardcover, 7″ x 8.75″, 48 pages, 50 numbered and signed copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery.
(Auerhahn 18)

15. Meltzer, David. WE ALL HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY…
meltzer_weSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
First edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 8.5″, 12 pages, 750 copies. Published as “Auerhahn Pamphlet No. 2”.
(Auerhahn 19)


16. Williams, Jonathan. IN ENGLAND’S GREEN &
williams_englandsSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
First edition, hand-sewn printed wrappers, 6.5″ x 9.25″, 20 pages, 750 copies. Illustrated by Philip Van Aver.
(Auerhahn 20)


17. Spicer, Jack. THE HEADS OF THE TOWN UP TO THE AETHER
spicer_headsSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
— A. First edition, perfect-bound illustrated wrappers, 4.75″ x 6.75″, 109 pages, 750 copies. Illustrated by Fran Herndon.
— B. First edition, hardcover, signed by the author and artist, with an original drawing, 4.75″ x 7.25″, 109 pages, 50 copies, bound by the Schuberth
Bindery. Illustrated by Fran Herndon.
Printed announcement issued. (Auerhahn 21)

18. Hoyem, Andrew. THE WAKE
hoyem_wakebSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1963
— A. First edition, perfect-bound printed wrappers, 6″ x 8.5″, 30 pages, 750 copies.
— B. First edition, hardcover, signed, 6″ x 9″, 30 pages, 35 copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery.
Three printed announcements issued.
(Auerhahn 22)

19. di Prima, Diane. THE NEW HANDBOOK OF HEAVEN
diprima_newSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1963
— A. First edition, perfect-bound printed wrappers, 5.25″ x 7.5″, 48 pages, 1000 copies.
— B. First edition, hardcover, signed, 6″ x 9″, 30 pages, 30 copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery.
(Auerhahn 23)

20. Brother Antoninus. THE POET IS DEAD
antoninus_poetSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1964
First edition, hardcover, 8.25″ x 10.5″, 28 pages, 205 copies. Printed announcement issued. (Auerhahn 24)



21. Deemer, Bill. POEMS
deemer_poemsbSan Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1964
— A. First edition, saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 9.25″, 20 pages, 500 copies. Introduction by Andrew Hoyem.
— B. First edition, hardcover, signed, 6.5″ x 9.25″, 20 pages, 25 copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery. Introduction by Andrew Hoyem.
Printed announcement issued.
(Auerhahn 37)

22. Davis, William. JANUS
davis_janusSan Francisco: The Auerhahn Society, Spring 1965
First edition, perfect-bound printed wrappers, 6.5″ x 9.75″, 64 pages,  750 copies.
(Auerhahn 38)



23. Van Buskirk, Alden. LAMI
San Francisco: The Auerhahn Society, 1965
First edition, perfect-bound printed wrappers, 7.75″ x 9.75″, 91 pages, 1000 copies.
(Auerhahn 39)



24. Olson, Charles. HUMAN UNIVERSE AND OTHER ESSAYS
olson_humanSan Francisco: The Auerhahn Society, 1965
First edition, hardcover, 7.75″ x 11″, 160 pages, 250 copies, bound by the Schuberth Bindery. Cover art by Robert La Vigne. Author photo by Kenneth Irby. Edited by Donald Allen.
(Auerhahn 40)

 

J

Jack Spicer’s J ran for eight issues: Nos. 1–5 were edited by Spicer in North Beach where contributions were left in a box marked “J” in The Place, a bar on Grant Avenue in San Francisco; Nos. 6 and 7 (an Apparition of the late J) were edited by George Stanley in San Francisco and New York City respectively while no. 8 was edited by Harold Dull in Rome. Spicer believed that poetry was for poets and the magazine had a small circulation but cast a long shadow. Contributors included: Robin Blaser, Richard Brautigan, Bruce Boyd, Kay Johnson, Robert Duncan, Joe Dunn, Ron Loewinsohn, Joanne Kyger, Helen Adam, and others. Covers (sometimes hand-embellished) were by Fran Herndon (Nos. 1, 2, 4, 5), Russell FitzGerald (No. 3), and George Stanley (Nos. 6, 7).


J, No. 1, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j01San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 38 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by Fran Herndon. Contributors: James Alexander, Ebbe Borregaard, Robin Blaser, Jack Spicer, Joe Dunn, Richard Brautigan, Kay Johnson, Robert Duncan.

J, No. 2, edited by Jack Spicer
San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 36 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by Fran Herndon. Contributors: George Stanley, Fran HerndonJess Collins, Robert Duncan, Stan Persky.

J, No. 3, edited by Jack Spicer
San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed and hand-painted cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 38 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by Russell FitzGerald. Contributors: Bruce Boyd, Ron Loewinsohn, George Stanley, Damon Beard, Jack Spicer.

J, No. 4, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j04San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed and hand-painted cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 36 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by Fran Herndon. Contributors:
Robert Duncan, Richard Brautigan, Joanne Kyger, Donald Allen, John Ryan, George Stanley,
Jack Spicer.

J, No. 5, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j05San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed and hand-painted cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 34 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by Fran Herndon. Contributors:
Larry Eigner, Jess CollinsRichard Brautigan,  Kay Johnson, Ron Loewinsohn, George Stanley,  Robert Duncan, Richard Duerden, Jack Spicer.

J, No. 6, edited by George Stanley
San Francisco: J, 1959
Corner-stapled sheets in printed cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 38 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by George Stanley. Contributors: Helen Adam, Paul Goodman, Joanne Kyger, Ron Loewinsohn.



J, No. 7, edited by George Stanley
New York: J, 1960
Corner-stapled sheets in printed cover, 8.5″ x 11″, 32 pages, mimeograph printed. Cover by George Stanley. Contributors: Ebbe Borregaard, Stan Persky. Published as “An Apparition of the Late J”.

J, No. 8, 1961, edited by Harold Dull
Rome: J, 1961
Contributors: Harold Dull, Stan Persky.


online excerpt from A Secret Location on the Lower East Side (Granary Books, 1998):

“In many ways the most beautiful of all the mimeo magazines, J had an eight-issue run. The first five issues were edited from North Beach bars by Jack Spicer with Fran Herndon as art editor. Spicer, who embodied the spirit of poetry in the Bay area, collected pieces for his magazine from a box marked “J” in The Place, a bar at 1546 Grant Avenue in San Francisco. A refugee from Los Angeles with two degrees from Berkeley, he had been a student of Josephine Miles there in the mid-1940s. They became close friends, and Spicer participated in the Friday afternoon poetry readings in Wheeler Hall during the late 1940s as well as the readings organized with Rocke-feller money by Ruth Witt-Diamant at the new Poetry Center at San Francisco State. Into the cauldron of poetic politics surrounding Miles, Kenneth Rexroth, Robert Duncan, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and others, Spicer introduced his freest of spirits, sometimes more Caliban than Ariel. Spicer lived for words (even making his living as a research assistant on a lexicographical project at Berkeley). He could be found most evenings in one of the North Beach bars or coffeehouses leading the discussion on poetry, poetics, myth, linguistics, and other mysteries. Like Blake and Yeats (with the help of Mrs. Yeats), Spicer attempted to clear his mind and open himself to “dictation” from other sources, which he devotedly pursued. Spicer also believed wholeheartedly in the necessity of human beings’ helping each other through communication, which he confronted in the editorship of J, a little newsletter of the poetic spirit. Donald Allen acted as J’s distributor in New York (“New York Contributions are not forbidden. But quotaed”), selling copies for Spicer to the Wilentz brothers of the Eighth Street Book Shop. In an early letter to Spicer, Allen eagerly wondered “what your editorial policy may be. Seduction by print.””


Further Reading:

Mimeo Mimeo on J

Poet as Crystal Radio Set

Although known primarily among a coterie of poets in the San Francisco Bay Area at the time of his death in 1965, Jack Spicer has slowly become a towering figure in American poetry. He was born in Los Angeles in 1925 to midwestern parents and raised in a Calvinist jack-spicerhome. While attending college at the University of California-Berkeley, Spicer met fellow poets Robin Blaser and Robert Duncan. The friendship among these three poets would develop into what they referred to as “The Berkeley Renaissance,” which would in turn become the San Francisco Renaissance after Spicer, Blaser and Duncan moved to San Francisco in the 1950s.

In 1954, he co-founded the Six Gallery in San Francisco, which soon became famous as the scene of the October 1955 Six Gallery reading that launched the West Coast Beat movement. In 1955, Spicer moved to New York and then to Boston, where he worked for a time in the Rare Book Room of Boston Public Library. Blaser was also in Boston at this time, and the pair made contact with a number of local poets, including John Wieners, Stephen Jonas, and Joe Dunn.

Spicer returned to San Francisco in 1956 and started working on After Lorca. This book represented a major change in direction for two reasons. Firstly, he came to the conclusion that stand-alone poems (which Spicer referred to as his one-night stands) were unsatisfactory and that henceforth he would compose serial poems. In fact, he wrote to Blaser that ‘all my stuff from the past (except the Elegies and Troilus) looks foul to me.’ Secondly, in writing After Lorca, he began to practice what he called “poetry as dictation”.

In 1957, Spicer ran a workshop called Poetry as Magic at San Francisco State College, which was attended by Duncan, Helen Adam, James Broughton, Joe Dunn, Jack Gilbert, and George Stanley. He also participated in, and sometimes hosted, Blabbermouth Night at a literary bar called The Place. This was a kind of contest of improvised poetry and encouraged Spicer’s view of poetry as being dictated to the poet. (more…)

Jack Spicer

youngspicer

 

Although known primarily among a coterie of poets in the San Francisco Bay Area at the time of his death in 1965, Jack Spicer has slowly become a towering figure in American poetry. He was born in Los Angeles in 1925 to midwestern parents and raised in a Calvinist home. While attending college at the University of California-Berkeley, Spicer met fellow poets Robin Blaser and Robert Duncan. The friendship among these three poets would develop into what they referred to as “The Berkeley Renaissance,” which would in turn become the San Francisco Renaissance after Spicer, Blaser and Duncan moved to San Francisco in the 1950s.

At Berkeley Spicer studied linguistics, finishing all but his dissertation for a PhD in Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse. In 1950 he lost his teaching assistantship after refusing to sign a “loyalty oath” to the United States, which the University of California required of all its employees under the Sloan-Levering Act. Spicer taught briefly at the University of Minnesota and worked for a short period of time in the rare books room at the Boston Public Library, but he lived the majority of his life in San Francisco working as a researcher in linguistics.

jack-spicer
Jack Spicer at the opening of the 6 Gallery, Halloween 1954. Photo by Robert Berg.

Spicer helped to form the 6 Gallery with five painter friends in 1954. It was at the 6 Gallery during Spicer’s sojourn east that Allen Ginsberg first read Howl. As a native Californian, Spicer tended to view the Beats as usurpers and criticized the poetry and self-promotion of poets like Ginsberg and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, as well as the Beat ethos in general. Always weary of labels and definitions, Spicer tended to associate with small, intimate groups of poets who lived in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco. Spicer acted as a mentor and teacher to these young poets by running poetry workshops and providing (sometimes caustic) advice for young poets.

In a 1975 New York Times article, Richard Ellman concluded: “Jack Spicer’s poems are always poised just on the face side of language, dipping all the way over toward that sudden flip, as if an effort were being made through feeling strongly in simple words to sneak up on the event of a man ruminating about something, or celebrating something, without rhetorical formulae, in his own beautiful inept awkwardness. It’s that poised ineptitude and awkwardness of the anti-academic teacher, the scholar of linguistics who can’t say what he knows in formal language, and has chosen to be very naive and look and hear and do. Spicer was not a very happy poet. He was obsessed with possibilities he could only occasionally realize, and too aware of contemporary life to settle for anything less in his work than what he probably could not achieve. He must have been a great spirit.”


Section A:
Books, Chapbooks, and Pamphlets

A1. AFTER LORCA
spicer_lorcaa. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, November-December 1957
Saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.5″ x 8.5″, 76 pages, 474 copies, multilith printed by Joe Dunn. Jack Spicer’s first book of poetry. Cover illustration by Jess Collins. Introduction by Federico Garcia Lorca.
(Johnston A2)

b. First edition, lettered and signed copies:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, November-December 1957
Saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.5″ x 8.5″, 76 pages, 26 copies lettered and signed with a drawing by the author, multilith printed by Joe Dunn. Jack Spicer’s first book of poetry. Cover illustration by Jess Collins. Introduction by Federico Garcia Lorca.
(Johnston A2)

c. First edition, second issue:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, November-December 1957
Unbound with out wrappers issued in mailing envelope, 6.5″ x 8.5″, 76 pages, 20 copies, multilith printed by Joe Dunn. Jack Spicer’s first book of poetry. Cover illustration by Jess Collins. Introduction by Federico Garcia Lorca.
(Johnston A2)

d. First UK edition:
London: Aloes Books, 1969

e. Second edition:
n.p.: Marco Polio, 1974

A2. HOMAGE TO CREELEY 
spicer_homageFirst edition:
Annapolis: privately printed by Harold and Dore Dull, Summer 1959
Side-stapled printed sheets, 8.5″ x 11″, 33 pages, 100 copies, spirit-mimeo printed. Incorporated into A4.
[not in archive]

A3. BILLY THE KID
spicer_billya. First edition, first state:
Stinson Beach: Enkidu Surrogate, October 1959
Saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.5″ x 8.5″, 16 pages, 750 copies, offset printed.  Illustrations by Jess Collins.

b. First edition, second state:
The second state includes holograph corrections to text on page 8.

c. Second edition:
n.p.: Oyster Press, March 1975
Hand-sewn printed wrappers, 6.75″ x 5.75″,  16 pages, 350 copies, letterpress printed

A4. THE HEADS IF THE TOWN UP TO THE AETHER
spicer_headsa. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
Perfect-bound illustrated  and printed wrappers, 4.75″ x 6.75″, 109 pages, 750 copies, letterpress printed. Illustrated by Fran Herndon.
(Auerhahn 21)

b. First edition, hardcover, signed copies:
San Francisco: Auerhahn Press, 1962
First edition, hardcover, signed by the author and artist, with an original drawing, 4.75″ x 7.25″, 109 pages, 50 copies signed by the author, letterpress printed, bound by the Schuberth Bindery. Illustrated by Fran Herndon.
(Auerhahn 21)

Printed announcement issued.

A5. LAMENT FOR THE MAKERS
spicer_lamenta. First edition:
Oakland: White Rabbit Press, 1962
Hand-sewn illustrated wrappers, 5.5″ x 8″, 16 pages, 100 copies, offset printed. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A11)

According to Johnston, “Back of title page has a fictitious acknowledgments list (by Graham Mackintosh) taken from Robert Duncan’s The Opening of the Field.”

b. First UK edition:
London: Aloes, 1971

A6. THE HOLY GRAIL
spicer_holya. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1964
Saddle-stapled sheets glued into illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 8.5″, 80 pages, offset printed. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh. (Johnston A19)

b. First edition, hardcover copies:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1964
First edition, hardcover, 6.25″ x 8.5″, 80 pages, 13 copies signed (4 were reportedly destroyed during signing), offset printed. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A19)

c. Second, Pirated edition:
spicer_holy2Berkeley: Jolly Roger Press, February 1969
Side-stapled printed and illustrated sheets, 8.5″ x 11″, 18 pages, 500 copies.

Pirate’s Note: “I only heard Jack Spicer read once, at the the Berkeley poetry conference in july 65. an hour after he read THE HOLY GRAIL, the last copy was gone from the avenue bookstores… this free pirate edition is distributed to make the poem available to those who need it.”

d. Third edition:
Watertown: Augtwofive, 1970






e. Fourth edition:
Portland: Timeworn (Poor Claudia at Revolution Publishing), 2014

A7. LANGUAGE
spicer_languagea. First edition:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, June 1965
Perfect-bound illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 10″, 72 pages, 950 copies, letterpress printed by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A30)

b. First edition, second printing:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1970
Perfect-bound illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 10″, 72 pages, 950 copies, offset printed from the first edition. Text added to the colophon: “Second printing 1970”.
(Johnston A54)

A8. BOOK OF MAGAZINE VERSE
spicer_magazinea. First edition:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1966
Perfect-bound printed and illustrated wrappers, 5.5″ x 7.75″, 56 pages, 1500 copies, letterpress printed by Graham Mackintosh. Prepared for publication from the original manuscript by Stan Persky. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A33)

According to Johnston, “The cover is a parody of the cover of Poetry (Chicago). The poems are arranged in groups intended for various little magazines and newspapers, each section printed on a stock appropriate to that publication, so that for example, the poems for Tish are on blue mimeo paper, those for the St. Louis Sporting News on newsprint.”

b. First edition, second printing
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1970
Perfect-bound printed and illustrated wrappers, 5.5″ x 7.75″, 56 pages, 1500 copies, letterpress printed by Graham Mackintosh. Prepared for publication from the original manuscript by Stan Persky. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A33)

A9. A BOOK OF MUSIC
spicer_musica. First edition, regular copies:
San Francisco: White Rabbit, 1969
Saddle-stapled illustrated wrappers, 6.25″ x 9.25″, 20 pages, 1800 copies designed and printed by Ron and Graham Mackintosh from a typescript made available by Peter Howard. The cover was one decided upon by the author. Illustrated by Graham Mackintosh.
(Johnston A48)

b. First edition, variant copies:
Variant copies include additional printed text on the front leaf: “150 copies printed Christmas, 1969 / for friends of White Rabbit, Oyez, / and the author”.
(Johnston A48a)

A10. THE RED WHEELBARROW
a. First edition, regular copies:
Berkeley: Arif Press, June 1971
Hand-sewn printed and illustrated wrappers, 5.5″ x 5.5″, 24 pages, 475 copies, letterpress printed. Illustrated by  Wesley Tanner. Printed by Wesley Tanner at Cranium Press.

b. First edition, numbered copies:
Berkeley: Arif Press, June 1971
Hand-sewn printed and illustrated wrappers, 5.5″ x 5.5″, 24 pages, 25 copies with hand-colored frontispiece, signed by the illustrator, letterpress printed. Illustrated by  Wesley Tanner. Printed by Wesley Tanner at Cranium Press.

Printed announcement issued.

A11. SOME THINGS FROM JACK
First edition:
Verona: Plain Wrapper Press, 1972
Wrappers, 6.5″ x 10.25″, 11 pages, 91 numbered copies, printed letterpress. Introduction by Richard Rummonds. Linocut by Miroslav Zahradka.

A12. BALLAD OF THE DEAD WOODCUTTER
First edition:
Berkeley: Arif Press, 1973
Single sheet folded twice to make a four-page booklet, 6″ x 3.5″ (when folded), letterpress printed by Wesley Tanner.

A13. ADMONITIONS
First edition:
New York: Adventures in Poetry, 1974
Side-stapled printed wrappers, 8.5″ x 11″, 44 pages, mimeograph printed.



A14. A LOST POEM
First edition:
Verona: Plain Wrapper Press, 1974
Hardcover, 9.5″ x 11.5″, 8 pages, 114 numbered copies signed by the artist, letterpress printed. Postscript by Richard-Gabriel Rummonds. Illustrated with two etchings by Ariel Parkinson.

A15. FIFTEEN FALSE PROPOSITIONS ABOUT GOD
First edition:
South San Francisco: Manroot, September 1974
Saddle-stapled printed and illustrated wrappers, 6.5″ x 8.5″, 16 pages, offset printed.

Poem first appeared in Beatitude, No. 3 (San Francisco, May 1959)

A16. THE COLLECTED BOOKS OF JACK SPICER
a. First edition, paperback copies:
Los Angeles: Black Sparrow Press, May 1975
Perfect-bound printed wrappers, 6.25″ x 8.75″, 382 pages including bibliography of first editions, 1000 copies. Edited and with commentary by Robin Blaser. Typography by Graham Mackintosh/White Rabbit.

b. First edition, hardcover copies: 
Los Angeles: Black Sparrow Press, May 1975
Hardcover in acetate dust jacket, 6.5″ x 9″, 382 pages including bibliography of first editions, 1000 copies. Edited and with commentary by Robin Blaser. Typography by Graham Mackintosh/White Rabbit.

c. First edition, hardcover, numbered and signed copies:
Los Angeles: Black Sparrow Press, May 1975
Hardcover in acetate dust jacket and slipcase, 6.5″ x 9″, 382 pages including bibliography of first editions, 100 copies, numbered and signed by Robin Blaser. Edited and with commentary by Robin Blaser. Typography by Graham Mackintosh/White Rabbit.

A17. ONE NIGHT STAND AND OTHER POEMS
First edition:
San Francisco: Grey Fox Press, 1980

A18. COLLECTED POEMS, 1945-46
First edition:
Berkeley: Oyez/White Rabbit Press, 1981
Saddle-stapled printed wrappers, 7″ x 9″, 32 pages, lithographed from the author’s typescript.


A19. THE TOWER OF BABEL
First edition:
Hoboken, N.J: Talisman House, 1994
Perfect-bound photo-illustrated wrappers, 170 pages. Charpter one of Jack Spicer’s Detective Novel, edited by Ed Foster and Kevin Killian.

Described by Lewis Ellingham and Kevin Killian as “a satiric look at the private world of poetry gone public in the wake of the Six Gallery HOWL reading of October, 1955.”

A20. TRAIN OF THOUGHT
First edition:
Gran Canaria: Zasterle Press, 1994
Charpter three of Jack Spicer’s Detective Novel






Section B:
Broadsides, Posters, and Postcards

B1. A REDWOOD FOREST
spicer_redwoodFirst edition:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1965
First edition, broadside, 8″ x 10.25″, letterpress printed. An excerpt from Language.
(Johnston B1)


B2. THE DAY FIVE THOUSAND FISH DIED IN THE CHARLES RIVER
First edition:
Pleasant Valley: Kriya Press, 1967
First edition, broadside, 11″ x 16″, 100 numbered copies, offset printed.
[not in archive]


B3. INDIAN SUMMER: MINNEAPOLIS 1950
First edition:
Brooklyn: Samuel Charters, 1970
First edition, broadside, 8″ x 18″, 100 copies. Published as Portents 16

B4. POSTSCRIPT
First edition:
Albuquerque: Billy Goat Press, 1973
First edition, broadside, 11″ x 17″, 100 numbered copies.

B5. BERKELEY IN A TIME OF PLAGUE
a. First edition, grey stock copies:
Berkeley: Arif Press, 1974
First edition, broadside, 9.25″ x 11.5″, 100 copies on grey stock.  Printed by Alastair Johnston at the Arif Press.

b. First edition, white stock copies:
Berkeley: Arif Press, 1974
First edition, broadside, 9.25″ x 11.5″, 50 copies on white stock. Printed by Alastair Johnston at the Arif Press.

B6. THE OAKS WEEP
First edition:
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1986
First edition, postcard, 4″ x 6″, letterpress printed.

B7. JACK SPICER 1925-1965
First edition:
Berkeley: Arif Press, 1986
First edition, broadside, 16″ x 10″, letterpress printed.

An excerpt from the second of three “lectures” that Spicer gave in Vancouver in 1965.

B8. LAMENT FOR THE MAKERS
First edition:
n.p.: White Rabbit Press, 2009
Prints an excerpt from Lament for the Makers. Issued as a keepsake for The Book Club of California.


Section C:
Contributions to Books and Other Publications

C1. THE NEW AMERICAN POETRY, 1945-1960, edited by Donald Allen
a. First edition, paperback copies:
New York: Grove Press, 1960
“Imaginary Elegies I-IV”

b. First edition, hardcover copies:
New York: Grove Press, 1960
“Imaginary Elegies I-IV”

C2. THE SPICER-FERLINGHETTI CORRESPONDENCE
spicer_ferlingFirst edition:
San Francisco: White Rabbit Press, 1964
First edition, single 8.5″ x 14″ sheet folded once, letterpress.
(Johnston A18)

C3. THE NEW WRITING IN THE U.S.A., edited by Donald Allen and Robert Creeley
First edition:
Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1967
“Love Poems”

C4. POETICS OF THE NEW AMERICAN POETRY, edited by Donald Allen
First edition:
New York: Grove Press, 1973

A21. AN ODE AND ARCADIA
First edition:
Berkeley: Ark Press, 1974
First edition, wrappers, 1000 copies


Section D
Contributions to Periodicals

D1. THE OCCICENT, edited by Jocelyn Willat
mags_occidentwint46Berkeley, Winter 1946
“To the Semanticists”, “The Chess Game”, “A New Testament”




D2. CONTOUR QUARTERLY, Vol. 1, No. 1, edited by Chris Maclaine
mags_contour01Berkeley, April 1947
[untitled] “After the ocean, shattering with equinox…”, “4 A.M.”, “Chinoiserie”




D3. BERKELEY MISCELLANY, No. 1, edited by Robert Duncan
mags_miscellany01Berkeley, 1948
“A Night in Four Parts”, “Troy Poem”, “Sonnet”





D4. BERKELEY MISCELLANY, No. 2, edited by Robert Duncan
mags_miscellany02Berkeley, 1949
“The Scroll-Work on the Casket”





D5. THE OCCIDENT, edited by Lynne Brown
mags_occidentfall49Berkeley, Fall 1949
“The Poet & Poetry: A Symposium”





D6. LANGUAGE: JOURNAL OF THE LINGUISTIC SOCIETY OF AMERICA, Vol. 28, No. 3, Part I
Baltimore, July-September 1952
“Correlation Methods of Comparing Ideolects in a Transition Area”

D7. OCCIDENT, edited by Richard Rummonds
Berkeley: Associated Students of the University of California, Spring 1954
“The Inheritance: Palm Sunday”




D8. EVERGREEN REVIEW, Vol. 1, No. 2, edited by Barney Rosset and Donald Allen
mags_evergreen0102New York City, 1957
“Berkeley in Time of Plague”, “The Dancing Ape…”, “Troy Poem”, “The Scroll-work on the Casket”, “Hibernation – After Morris Graves”, “Psychoanalysis: An Elegy”, “The Song of the Bird in the Loins”

D9. MEASURE, No. 1, edited by John Wieners
mags_measure01Boston, Summer 1957
“Song for Bird and Myself”





D10. BEATITUDE, No. 3, published by John Kelly
mags_beatitude03San Francisco, 23 May 1959
“Fifteen False Propositions about God”





D11. BEATITUDE, No. 6, published by John Kelly
San Francisco, [June] 1959
“Epithalamium” [co-authored with Bruce Boyd, Ronald Primack, and George Stanley]




D12. J, No. 1, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j01San Francisco, 1959
“Hokkus”





D13. J, No. 2, edited by Jack Spicer
San Francisco, 1959
[untitled] “Down to new beaches where the sea…”, “Epilog of Jim”
[not in archive]



D14. J, No. 3, edited by Jack Spicer
San Francisco, 1959
“Last Hokku”, [untitled] “The shabby sea where you float in…”




D15. J, No. 4, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j04San Francisco, [October] 1959
“Jacob”





D16. J, No. 5, edited by Jack Spicer
mags_j05San Francisco, 1959
“Fifth Elegy”





D17. BEATITUDE, No. 17, edited by Bob Kaufman
mags_beatitude17San Francisco: City Light Books, Oct-Nov 1960
“When I hear the word Ferlinghetti / I reach for my g. . . n” [attributed to Jack Slicer]




D18. J, No. 8, edited by Harold Dull
San Francisco, 1961
“A Translation for Jim”

D19. FOOT, No. 2, edited by Richard Duerden and William Brown
mags_foot02
Berkeley, 1962
“Correspondence”





D20. THE SAN FRANCISCO CAPITALIST BLOODSUCKER / N
mags_capitalistSan Francisco, Spring 1962
“Three Marxist Essays”





D21. MEASURE, No. 3, edited by John Wieners
mags_measure03Boston, Summer 1962
“Central Park West”





D22. OPEN SPACE, No. 0, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, January 1964
[untitled] “This ocean, humiliating in its disguises…”
[not in archive]



D23. OPEN SPACE, No. 1, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, February 1964
“Sporting Life”





D24. OPEN SPACE, No. 2, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, February 1964
“This is Submitted for your Valentine Contest”, [untitled] “I hear a banging on the door of night…”
[not in archive]


D25. OPEN SPACE, No. 3, edited by Stan Persky
mags_openspace03San Francisco, March 1964
“Predictions”, [untitled] “The log in the fire…”, [untitled] “Finally the messages penetrate…”, “Dear Ferlinghetti”



D26. OPEN SPACE, No. 4, edited by Stan Persky
mags_openspace04tSan Francisco, 1964
[untitled] “Heroes eat soup…”, [untitled] “Smoke signals…”, [untitled] “A redwood forest…”, [untitled] “The whorship of beauty…”



D27. OPEN SPACE, No. 5, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, 1964
[untitled] “Pull down the shade of ruin, rain verse…”, [untitled] “If your mother’s mother had not riven, mother…”, [untitled] “What in sight do I have…”, [untitled] “It comes May and the summers renew themselves…”, [untitled] “Thanatos, the death-plant in the skull…”
[not in archive]

D28. OPEN SPACE, No. 6, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, June 1964
[untitled] “1st SF home rainout since. Bounce…”, [untitled] “The country is not very well defined…”, [untitled] “I squint my eyes to cry…”, [untitled] “The metallurgical analysis of the stone that…”

D29. OPEN SPACE, No. 7, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, 1964
“Love Poems”, “Protestant Letter”
[not in archive]




D30. OPEN SPACE, No. 8, edited by Stan Persky
mags_openspace08San Francisco, 1964
“Intermission I”, “Intermission II”, “Intermission III”, “Transformations I”, “Transformation II”, “Transformations III”



D31. OPEN SPACE, No. 9, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, 1964
“Morphemicks”
[not in archive]




D32. OPEN SPACE, No. 10, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, 1964
“Phonemics”





D33. OPEN SPACE, No. 11, edited by Stan Persky
San Francisco, 1964
“Graphemics 1-5”
[not in archive]




D34. THE WIVENHOE PARK REVIEW, No. 1, edited by Thomas Clark and Andrew Crozier
mags_wivenhoe01Essex: University of Essex, 1965
“15 False Propositions about God”






D35. WORK, No. 2, edited by John Sinclair
Detroit: Artists Workshop Press, Fall 1965
“Graphemic #10”





D36. COW, No. 1, edited by Luther T. Cupp
mags_cow01San Francisco: Cow, 1965
“Dear Sister Mary”





D37. WHE’RE, No.1, edited by Ron Caplan
Detroit: Artists’ Workshop, Summer 1966
“Lament for the Makers”, “The Scroll-work on the Casket”, “Dover Beach”, “Postscript”, “The Birds”, “The Birth of Venus”

D38. O’ER, No. 2, edited by David Sandberg
mags_oar02San Francisco, December 1966
from After Lorca: “Buster Keaton Rides Again: A Sequel”




D39. THE PACIFIC NATION, No. 1, edited by Robin Blaser
mags_pacific01Vancouver, June 1967
“A Poem to the Reader of the Poem”





D40. FLOATING BEAR, No. 33
Brooklyn, 1967
“The Bridge Game”, “Lives of the Philosophers: Diogenes”

D41. FLOATING BEAR, No. 34
Brooklyn, 1967
“The Day Five Thousand Fish Died in the Charles River”

D42. COLLECTION, No. 1, edited by Peter Riley
mags_collection01Sussex, March 1968
“The Red Wheelbarrow”





D43. IRON, No. 7
British Columbia, 1969
“Ode for Walt Whitman”

D44. TISH, No.44, Issue D, edited by Karen Tallman
Vancouver, February 1969
“Five Variations on the Earth”

D45. WRITING, No. 2
Vancouver, 1970
“Admonitions”

D46. BOSS, No. 4
New York: Boss Magazine, 1970

D47. CATERPILLAR, No. 12
Sherman Oaks, July 1970

D48. IS, No. 8, edited by Victor Coleman
Toronto: Coach House Press, 1970

D49. THE HARRIS REVIEW, edited by Harris Schiff
New York: Harris Review, baseball season 1971
[untitled] “The oaks…”, [untitled] “With fifteen cents and that I could get a…”

D50. IO, No. 10 Baseball Issue, edited by Richard Grossinger 
Cape Elizabeth, ME: IO Publications, 1971

D51. STOOGE 6, Editor: Geoff Young and Allen Schiller
Albuquerque, 1972
[untitled] “These big trucks drive…”

D52. SHOCKS, Double Issue 3/4, edited by Stephen Vincent
March 1974 

from “After Lorca”

D53. MANROOT, No. 10, Spicer issue
Fall-Winter 1974

D54. ADVENTURES IN POETRY, No. 12, edited by Larry Fagin
mags_adventuresp12New York: The Poetry Project, Summer 1975
“Babel”, “Dardenella”, “Lives of the Philosophers: Diogenes”, [untitled] “Lack of oxygen…”, [untitled] “In- / Visible zombies…”, “Spider Song”


D55. THE CAPILANO REVIEW, No. 8/9, edited by Pierre Coupey 
Vancouver: Capilano College, 1975

D56. TELEPHONE, No. 10, edited Maureen Owen 
New York: Telephone Books Press, 1975
“Five Variations for K.”

D57. NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW, 23
November 1975

D58. PARNASSUS: POETRY IN REVIEW
Spring-Summer 1976

D59. IO, No. 24, edited by Kevin Kerran and Richard Grossinger
Ann Arbor: North Atlantic Books, 1977
“Four Poems for the St. Louis Sporting News”

D60. BOUNDARY 2, No. 6,  edited by William V. Spanos
SUNY, Binghamton, Fall 1977
“A Plan for a Book on Tarot”

D61. ACTS, No. 6, A Book of Correspondences for Jack Spicer
1986

D62. IRONWOOD, Vol. 14, Issue 2, No. 28, edited by Michael Cuddihy
Tucson: Ironwood Press, Fall 1986

D63. O-BLEK, No. 10, edited by Peter Gizzi and Connell McGrath
Stockbridge: The Garlic Press, Fall 1991
“For Kids”, “Spider Song”

D64. LIFT, Nos. 10/11, edited by Joseph Torra
Somerville: Lift, 1992

D65. EXACT CHANGE YEARBOOK, No. 1
1995


Further Reading:

1. Jack Spicer by Edward Halsey Foster (Boise, Idaho : Boise State University, c1991)

2. Poet be like God: Jack Spicer and the Berkeley Renaissance by Kevin Killian & Lewis Ellingham (Hanover, NH: Wesleyan University Press, 1998)

3. The House That Jack Built: The Collected Lectures of Jack Spicer, ed. Peter Gizzi (Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 1998)


Online Resources:

Academy of American Poets
Book Forum
Jacket Magazine
Penn Sound
Poetry Foundation
University of Buffalo 


References Consulted:

Clay, Steven and Rodney Phillips. A SECRET LOCATION ON THE LOWER EAST SIDE: Adventures in Writing, 1960-1980
New York: New York Public Library / Granary Books, 1998

Dorbin, Sanford. A CHECKLIST OF THE PUBLISHED WRITING OF JACK SPICER
Sacramento: California Librarian, October 1970

Johnston, Alastair. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE AUERHAHN PRESS & ITS SUCCESSOR DAVE HASELWOOD BOOKS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1976

Johnston, Alastair. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE WHITE RABBIT PRESS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1985

Lepper, Gary M. A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL INTRODUCTION TO SEVENTY-FIVE MODERN AMERICAN AUTHORS
Berkeley: Serendipity Books, 1976

Auerhahn Press

Section A: Auerhahn Press: Books & Pamphlets 1958-1965

Section B: Auerhahn Press: Broadsides 1959-1965

Section C: Auerhahn Press: Commissioned Publications 1961-1965

Section D: Dave Haselwood Books 1965-1969

While stationed with the U.S. Army in Germany during the 1950s, David Haselwood conceived the idea of becoming a publisher. At the time he was corresponding with his friend Michael McClure (also a native of Wichita, Kansas) who was living in San Francisco. McClure’s first book of poems, Passage (1956), was being published by Jonathan Williams’ Jargon Press. “Jonathan was having books printed in Germany because of the high quality and low cost,” Haselwood says, “and I began looking into things.”

When Haselwood was released from the Army, he came to live in San Francisco. According to Haselwood, “During the summer of 1958 I drifted around San Francisco talking endlessly with painters such as Robert LaVigne and Jesse Sharpe and poets [Philip] Lamantia, [Michael] McClure, [John] Wieners, and reading all the live poetry and prose I could get my hands on. It was at this time that it occurred to me that the press could mean a great many things … ” From this intense exposure to the active literary scene in the Bay Area grew the desire to see these writers published without the great delays imposed by larger printing establishments.

A short while later in 1958 appeared the first publication of the Auerhahn Press, John Wieners’s The Hotel Wentley Poems. After this initial experience, in which the actual printing was done by a commercial printer (and edited by the printer without Haselwood’s knowledge), Haselwood was convinced that he should not only design all future books himself, but also print them: “The first and final consideration in printing poetry is the poetry itself. If the poems are great they create their own space, the publisher is just a midwife during the final operation…” With this ideal in mind, Haselwood tackled the publication of Philip Lamantia’s Ekstasis, and went on to the printing of Michael McClure’s Hymns to St. Geryon.

Though its limited financial resources were drained by this last publication, the press continued its publication of controversial and avant-garde works, such as Lamantia’s pamphlet Narcotica.

Haselwood took on a partner, Andrew Hoyem, in 1961. By then, a number of Kansans had arrived in San Francisco — including Robert Branaman, who shared living quarters with Haselwood for a time, and Glenn Todd, who later worked as a pressman and editor at Arion Press, which Hoyem founded after an amicable dissolution of his Auerhahn interests in 1964. Todd remembers the partners at work at 1334 Franklin Street: “The Auerhahn was a small press in a small room. Andrew would be setting type, and Dave running the press, passing single sheets of paper through. They’d be in their blue printer’s aprons.” Branaman adds, “Dave looked like someone out of Dickens to me. His shop was a center for artists. It was a well-known center of the culture.”

Another of San Francisco’s cultural hot spots was the Batman Gallery, first owned by William Jahrmarkt, a.k.a. Billy Batman, whose art interests leaned to the visionary, the experimental and the mystical. According to Jack Foley in O Her Blackness Sparkles! The Life and Times of the Batman Art Gallery, 1960-65 (1995), the opening of the gallery was a “spectacular affair” and featured 99 pieces of Bruce Conner’s work. Auerhahn produced the announcement. In 1962, the gallery was sold to Michael Agron, a psychiatrist and University of California Medical Center associate professor who researched LSD as a therapeutic tool. Collaborating with Haselwood, Agron conceived of each exhibition’s announcement as a work of art. The first Agron show, Master-Bat, showcased the works of, among others, Conner and Branaman.

As the Beat scene faded with the ascent of Hippie culture, Haselwood continued to collaborate with artists on Dave Haselwood Books projects. He worked for a time at Arion Press and designed books for other presses, but his interest in publishing had waned by the close of the ’60s. It was time, he says, to choose another path.


References consulted:

Clay, Steven and Rodney Phillips. A SECRET LOCATION ON THE LOWER EAST SIDE: Adventures in Writing, 1960-1980
New York: New York Public Library / Granary Books, 1998

Clements, Marshall. A CATALOG OF WORKS BY MICHAEL MCCLURE, 1956-1965
New York: The Phoenix Book Shop, 1965

Johnston, Alastair. A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE AUERHAHN PRESS & ITS SUCCESSOR DAVE HASELWOOD BOOKS
Berkeley: Poltroon Press, 1976

Lepper, Gary M. A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL INTRODUCTION TO SEVENTY-FIVE MODERN AMERICAN AUTHORS
Berkeley: Serendipity Books, 1976