The Collected Poems of Amnesia Glasscock. John Steinbeck, Robert Peters.
The Collected Poems of Amnesia Glasscock
The Collected Poems of Amnesia Glasscock
The Collected Poems of Amnesia Glasscock

The Collected Poems of Amnesia Glasscock

South San Francisco, CA: ManRoot, 1976. Limited First Edition. Sewn Wrappers. Inscribed & signed by Robert Peters to James Perrizo. "At age thirty-two John Steinbeck published eight poems in the now defunct Monterey Beacon, under the pseudonym "Amnesia Glasscock." A ninth poem was unsigned...there is little sophistication of technique or theme. They read much like productions by a gifted, nasty highschooler getting his kicks from admiring men, in the consciousness of a woman, while pretending to despise homosexuals. It has been fair game, of course, to detect homosexual leanings in almost every male writer of note...Such speculations, whether parlor game or no, have validity. Artists are sensitive. Sensitivity implies a quickening of anima, or female self. The female self responds to male sexuality. The writer of merit can't avoid reflecting his fascination with other males. The anima will be heard." (from "Steinbeck as Glasscock: A Response" by Robert Peters) These pseudonymous poems, first published in 1935 & among the most obscure, unexemplary & controversial published writings by the iconic American novelist John Steinbeck (1902-1968), are reprinted here with a Response by Robert Peters (1924-2014). Peters, a great American poet, playwright, critic & scholar, then-bravely declared himself a gay man during the 1960s after an earlier, seemingly straight life. He strongly takes Steinbeck to task for likely being a closeted or latent homosexual while hiding under a female pen name. A superb hand-crafted chapbook production, limited to 250 hand-numbered copies, of which this is copy No. 185/200; & printed by our good friend & colleague, the esteemed poet Clive Matson, along with Peter Lewis, as noted in colophon. With opaque blank protective sleeve over sewn wrappers, with beautiful front cover & title page illustration by Jose Laffitte. On the title page, Peters has hand-inscribed & signed: "Dear Jim-/ Both Mrs. Steinbecks/ are unhappy with this!/ (signed) Robert Peters/ (doodle-flourish)." "Jim" is James Perrizo (1944-2006), a major Beat-&-Beyond scholar & collector who was a friend of & frequent correspondent with Peters. Perrizo was also gay, & so there is a special commiseration in this warm inscription. The reference to "both Mrs. Steinbecks" is interesting, since we have seen references to these poems as actually having been written by Steinbeck's first wife, Carol. This has never been confirmed to our knowledge, & we have seen a majority of references that name Steinbeck himself as the author behind "Amnesia Glasscock." An extremely rare & most interesting Steinbeck/ Peters collectible, especially with this most significant inscription, association & provenance. In very fine condition with only some short, faint creases & a few tiny bumps at edges & corners of protective sleeve, esp. upper edges & corners where it extends above wrappers; several very small spots near lower front edge of same; a few tiny bumps at lower edge of front wrapper; otherwise in virtually pristine condition inside & out. Very Fine. [Item #3273]

Price: $100.00