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Omaha. NE: Abattoir Editions, The University of Nebraska, 1985. First Edition. Hardcover. LIMITED FIRST EDITION. NUMBER 56 OF 200 COPIES. Olive green cloth with black title to white label on the spine. Label darkened at lower edge, otherwise fine, without printed dust jacket, as issued. In glassine dust jacket. Vietnam War poetry. PRI/102416. Near Fine.
Washington DC: Abstract Orange, 2021. Number 9 of 10 copies of this inventive work by Lauren Emeritz in honor of Emily Dickinson. The artist's statement: "This book was based on the poetry of Emily Dickinson and released on her birthday, December 10th. The book started as visual interpretation of the words 'Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul' with a thing of feathers perched in a box." The simple construction mimics that of a case-bound book, with a spine and fore-edge but it is actually a box. The box is made of basswood and the spine is white birch wood veneer. A gentle wire clasp holds the book shut, but not locked shut. "Inside the box is "the thing with feathers. "The 'thing' is not a bird with a beak and feet, but a grouping of brightly colored orange feathers. They do not represent a specific bird, but rather a fictional idea of a thing with feathers. The feathers are made from cut paper that is scored to looks like feathers and held together by a simple wire. The cover is a bright, glowing yellow with the title in orange letterpress printed type, and a wooden “inlay” with the author's name. This represents that the while the poem is by her and she was the inspiration for the piece, the piece is not just about her, but the idea of hope [artist's statement]." In fine condition. Measures 5.25 x 7.25 x 1 inches. ARTISTSB/041223. Fine.
Washington DC: Abstract Orange, 2019. Number 8 of 36 copies signed and numbered by the book artist. The book was published on May 31, 2019 in celebration of Walt Whitman's 200th birthday. The book artist writes: "The book explores ideas central to Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass including transcendentalism, or the inherent goodness of nature, and realism, depicting familiar things as they are. It captures both the complexity and simplicity of nature by juxtaposing dimensional paper grass texture and a quote about nature and wonder. The book is not a reprinting of all of Whitman’s words, but an art object that encapsulates the feeling of Whitman." Her evocative work is done as a box that opens like a traditional book. The inside front cover and back cover are covered with cream paper that includes quotes from Whitman along with his image. Inside of the box/book are several spiky rows of grass leaves crafted from green paper. The box is covered with green paper with the title, author and press name in a lighter shade of green. In fine condition. Measures 5.25 x 7.25 inches. ARTISTB/091123. Fine.
Baltimore: John B. Piet, 1881. Hardcover. SCARCE. Good in original red cloth boards with gilt title and decoration to spine and front cover. Covers are dampstained and lightly soiled. There is a large split to binding after front endpage and a few smaller splits within textblock. Front pastedown is loose near hinge. Frontispiece illustration and each poem begins with a decorative initial. Writing in pencil on front endpage, else clean interior. Slight musty smell. 96 pages. POE/121013. Good.
Morelia, Mexico: Ioulia Akhmadeeva and Alternativa Ediciones, 2019. Hardcover. Number 8 of 17 copies, of which three are special copies with sand and shells from each visited place. Signed by the artist. Includes poetic moments and painterly landscapes from Crimea in the Ukraine, Baja in California, Oaxaca and Guerrero in Mexico. Pages of poetry about the sea are printed on translucent paper that has been cut in various shapes to mirror designs within facing paintings. Many pages have elaborate cut-outs of clouds and starfish to create windows. Stab bound in blue yotsume toji silk over white patterned paper covered boards with black title to the front cover. This book was printed using letterpress, silkscreen, and laser printing. Clean and bright. Unpaginated. [48 pages.] Created by Russian born book artist Ioulia Akhmadeeva, who has resided and worked in Mexico since 1994. She is a full professor of the book arts at the university in Morelia, Michoacá. Fine.
Milan: Giovanni Pirotta, 1818. Hardcover. A beautiful version of this great Italian epic poem that first appeared in 1516. It takes place against the backdrop of the war between Charlemagne and the King of Africa, and has many fantastic and magical elements. It was a big influence on later works of literature, including Spenser's Faerie Queen and Shakespeare's Much Ado. Very good in full leather with repairs made using Japanese paper to both joints. The edges of this tissue are coming loose. A small section of modern leather has been added to the front board where there had been a chip to the original leather. The new leather has been tooled and dyed to blend with the original. Light cracking to leather with minimal board-wear. Despite the noted repairs, this is a nice, attractive copy with strong, tight spine and clean interior. Marbled end pages. Bookplate to front end page. In Italian. Folio. ITA109201. Very Good.
London: Chiswick Press [Privately printed], 1888. Paperback. First Edition. Scarce. Presentation copy inscribed "To F. Coylestone with best wishes T. Ashe Feb. 1888." Thomas Ashe (1836-1889) was a minor English poet who was admired by some, including Michael Field, but his work was not popular with his generation. He has risen far enough to be included in many recent anthologies of mid-to late- Victorian verse. In original paper wrappers. Covers stained, creased on right corner, and chipped along edges. Hinges tender but text block is tight and clean. Very good condition. 84 pages. POE/102714. Very Good.
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1928. Hardcover. INSCRIBED BY THE AUTHOR. Very Good Plus/No Jacket. 8vo. In black cloth covered boards with gilt title stamp to spine and gilt and blind stamp to front board. Minor fading to spine and slight shelfwear to board edges. Interior is mostly clean and bright with only slight aging to endpapers. Inscribed by author on FFEP. 76pp. POE/051304. Very Good +.
Boston: Little Brown & Company, 1915. LIMITED EDITION. Hardcover. Thin 8vo. Number 340 of 500 numbered copies and SIGNED BY AUTHOR. 3/4 white cloth backed blue paper covered boards with gilt title to spine and front board. Charming illustration of a tree in gilt to front board. Minor browning to spine and to edges of boards. Minor browning to endpages, else interior is very clean. Tight binding. POE/102005. Very Good.
Mission, B.C. Barbarian Press, 2023. Hardcover. One of 108 copies for sale. An additional 20 were hors commerce. This marvelous book is the 52nd book from the Barbarian Press. Its founders Crispin and Jan Elsted write: "We conceived this book as a celebration of our 50 years of marriage and our 45 years as Barbarians. It comprises fifty of our favourite love poems, reaching back to classical Greece and the Old Testament, and forward through the late Middle Ages, the renaissance, and the 18th and 19th centuries to the present day, by twenty-eight poets ranging from the writer(s) of The Song of Songs which is Solomon’s to lyrics by Sappho, to Chaucer, Spenser and Donne, Marvell, Clare, Christina Rossetti, Tennyson and Yeats, to contemporaries Jan Zwicky and Heather Simeney MacLeod, among many others – not forgetting the ubiquitous Anonymous, who contributes five. Eight of Shakespeare’s sonnets form a thematic spine throughout the book. We invited seven engravers who have illustrated our books over the years and have become part of our lives as friends and collaborators to contribute engravings to accompany poems of their choice: Richard Wagener engraved a stunning frontispiece block, while Abigail Rorer, Andy English, Simon Brett, Peter Lazarov, Walter Bachinski, and Graham Williams chose to illustrate poems that range from the Middle English to the contemporary. The type we have chosen for the book is Pastonchi, in its inaugural use here at the press – a graceful, elegant, but little-known face issued by Monotype in 1929, designed by the Italian poet Francesco Pastonchi with the typographer Eduardo Cotti to be used to print an edition of the Italian classics. We are fond of the face. Although it has never been widely used (especially in North America), and has occasionally been criticized by those who fail to respond to its openheartedness, we feel it is ideally suited to poetry, and are delighted to add it to our range of typefaces." The book was designed by Crispin Elsted, who also designed the patterned paper for the binding. Jan Elsted printed the text and the engravings. Apollonia Elsted printed many of the title lines and the cover papers. Bound in half crimson morocco with paper covers at The Mad Hatter Bookbinding Company. Printed on Zerkall ENR White Smooth paper. Each copy is housed in a crimson cloth slipcase with a portfolio containing a suite of seven proofs of the engravings used for the book. In fine condition. Measures 7.25 inches x 10.5 inches. 88 numbered pages + 8 unnumbered pages. PRI/091423. Fine.
Mission, B.C. Barbarian Press, 2022. Paperback. One of 125 copies, this being one of the 55 standard copies. This is the 51st book issued by the very fine Barbarian Press that Crispin and Jan Elsted founded in 1977. The book beautifully exemplifies their philosophy in the creation of books and the fine craftsmanship they bring to each. They write about this book on their website: "Robert Bringhurst is widely known as a typographer and designer of books. The Elements of Typographic Style, originally published in 1992, has become a bible to most serious typographers, printers and designers. It has appeared in five subsequent revised editions and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. He has also published several collections of essays and talks (or ‘pieces of thinking’, as he calls them) on language, cultural history, poetry, the relations between humanity and the natural world, and many other subjects, all of which are profoundly interesting and endlessly stimulating. He has translated some epic poems from Haida, and the complete writings of Parmenides from classical Greek. But first, and continuing throughout all his other work, he is one of Canada’s leading poets.... In Ten Poems with One Title, Richard Wagener’s passionate, forceful two-colour abstract engravings, reminiscent of the work of such Abstract Expressionists as Robert Motherwell and Franz Kline, meld with Bringhurst’s contemplative, elegant poems, each at once counterpointing and reflecting the character of the other. The relationship is profound and moving." Bound in gray and black paper covers with a black linen spine. The text was hand-set in Walbaum on Zerkall Smooth White Wove paper by Apollonia Elsted after designs by Crispin Elsted in consultation with Jan Elsted. The engravings by Richard Wagener were printed at his studio in California and sent to the press in sheets. The binding was bound by Alanna Simensen at The Mad Hatter Bookbinding Company. Housed in a black paper covered slipcase. In fine condition. Measures 7.75 x 10.75 inches. Unpaginated. [About 40 pages] PRI/112822. Fine.
La Haye: D.A. Daamen, 1939. Paperback. Number 221 of 500 copies. With full page erotic illustrations by Bantizinger, in a style similar to Matisse. In cream paper wrappers with black title to front wrapper. Tape repair to front wrapper near front joint. Chipping and browning to wrappers and spine panel. A few spots of soiling to wrappers. Clean, bright interior with full page (mostly erotic) illustrations for each of the 12 poems. IN FRENCH. Size: Thin folio. About 13.75 x 9.75 inches. FRE/021323. Very Good.