Circus Nerves. Kenward Elmslie.
Circus Nerves

Circus Nerves

Los Angeles, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1971. First Trade Softcover Edition / Review Copy / Association Copy. Softcover. Signed (Twice) & Inscribed by Kenward Elmslie to Ken Mikolowski, close friend of Elmslie's & founders of Detroit's "Alternative Press," publishers of many Beat/New York School/Black Mountain-related authors. (1/750 Unsigned, Unnumbered Copies). In this exceptional early apex in the multitalented Kenward Elmslie's prolific career, Elmslie bursts forth just a year after Ron Padgett's momentous "Anthology of New York Poets" as a fully-formed modern master with an impeccable ear for vowel, and a discernible talent for the musical arrangement of his lines. Such astounding examples of poetic excellence are these excerpts: "...charred by the spike-like ping of the jungle wind..." and "mushrooms / blooming in fields dank as attics in autumn..." The book is dedicated to Joe Brainard--a long-treasured friend of Elmslie's--but the overarching influence is undoubtedly Frank O'Hara. O'Hara's acutely-attuned ear, as exemplified in the poem "Music" that launches Lunch Poems, pervades Elmslie's "compositional" conceptions--and the profit that study had on its student is abundantly evident. Laid-in are a Black Sparrow Press review slip listing the scheduled release of the book to occur on "Aug. 17, 1971" & an accompanying promotional flyer-insert with Joe Brainard illustration. Both the review slip & the promotional-flyer insert in very fine condition, essentially mint. Inscription by Kenward Elmslie on front-facing endpaper reads: "For Ken / "Here comes more identicals -- / Love, Ken / NYC / Nov 7 '81." Signature on title page above title reads: "Kenward Elmslie" and is written in thin black felt pen ink, as is the inscription. One of the absolute rarest Elmslie titles with legendary association & provenance. Book in fine-very fine condition with only slight yellowing at all fine-edges; minute shelf-wear to same; minor bump to rightmost fine-edge of front cover just below center-middle; minor rubbing to front, back covers; scattered instances of spotting & three slightly broader spots near rightmost fine-edge of back cover at center. Fine-Very Fine. [Item #2831]

Price: $175.00 save 25% $131.25

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