Saturday, September 2, 2017



Envelope Poems: Poetry by Emily Dickinson, edited by Jen Bervin and Marta Werner
(New Directions / Christine Burgin Gallery, 2016)

Came across...and bought...Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems...a rendering down of The Gorgeous Nothings to a tiny version big enough to be hidden in a desk drawer to be rediscovered after one's death.

From The Gorgeous Nothings (click on all images to enlarge):

Shed of the scholarly apparatus of The Gorgeous Nothings, Envelope Poems is an interesting volume with texts—here’s a sample:

It reminds me of Man's Wows—my own small book of erasure poems from the early 80's. (Man’s Wows was originally published on special papers by Charles Alexander’s Black Mesa Press in 1982, and is now available online through Duration Press.) Here are two samples:

The transcriptions by Jen Bervin and Marta Werner are fun and the photographs of the hapticity of the originals effective ... one can almost smell the silverfish droppings and chemical fug of foxing. They also suggest the creation of ever more interesting Poem-Objects. I don't think these are ED's poems but are Bervin and Werner’s found poems. And they do work as such.


Jesse Glass is the author of numerous books and has exhibited his visual art in a number of locations. He recently released Charm for Survivors, Selected Painted Books & Sequences from The Knives Forks Spoons Press (2017).

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