GENERAL: TapRoot. Poetry.

- - The original note follows - -

Path: psuvm!!!cleveland.Freenet.Edu!au462
From: [email protected] (Robert Drake)
Newsgroups: alt.artcom
Subject: TapRoot 8/92 zine reviews
Date: 22 Sep 1992 03:47:10 GMT
Organization: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio (USA)
Lines: 279
Message-ID: <[email protected]>

Issue #0, part 1: 'zines 8/92
TapRoot is a quarterly publication of Independent, Underground,
and Experimental language-centered arts. Over the past 10 years,
we have published 40 collections of poetry, writing, and visio-
verbal art in a variety of formats. In the Summer of 1992, we
began assembling contact information and reviews of like-minded
publications, and distributing them as part of a local (Cleveland
Ohio) poetry tabloid, the Cleveland Review. This posting is an
experiment, to test the practicality of (and interest in)
distributing this information through the Net. Your response and
comments are vital in determining the fate of this project.
Please e-mail your feedback to editor Luigi-Bob Drake at:
[email protected]

Hard-copies of The Cleveland Review are available from: Burning
Press, PO Box 585, Lakewood OH 44107--$2.50. All reviews by
Luigi, and copyright 1992 by Burning Press, Cleveland. Burning
Press is a non-profit educational corporation. Permission
granted to reproduce this material FOR NON-COMMERCIAL PURPOSES,
provided that this introductory notice is included.


11x30--(Vol. 4 #2), 32 Scott House, Univ. of Toledo, Toledo OH
43606. Named for it's physical size, the most recent issue of
this broadside focuses on Poetry Slams in general and the work of
Boston's reigning Slam Queen Patricia Smith in particular.

ASYLUM--(Vol. 6 #2), PO Box 6203, Santa Maria CA 93456. 44 pp.,
$3. Writing, experimental and fun, which is a good combination.
Short-shorts from Celestine Frost, Belinda Subraman, Donna Glee
Williams; somewhat longer stories by S. Ramanth, John Richards,
and (my fave) Catherine Scherer. Scattering of prosepoems,
translations, visual/concrete, and a few reviews--not a clinker
in the bunch.

BOGG--(#65), 422 N. Cleveland St., Arlington VA 22201. 64 pp.,
$4.50 Still going strong, another solid and eclectic collection
of poetry from the US & UK (Britain and her former empirees).
The Brits as a batch often come across more genteel, especially
compared to some of the bad-boy Yank's like Ron Androla, Tom
House, & the Buk. But there's a wide range of voices from both
sides of the pond, and somehow it all hangs together. The
letters section seems a little less cantankerous since last I
looked, and the reviews are now in the form of selections from
the chaps reviewed, so you can make yr own judgements--nice way
to go.

BRIEF--(#6, Jan. '90), PO Box 33, Canyon Ca 94516. 28pp. Poems
that require some thinking to digest, selected and sparsely
presented to give the needed headspace and breathingroom. Nearly
fragmentary lyrics from Todd Baron, Robert Fitterman, and Kent's
own Tom Beckett, almost prose-poems from Gerald Burns, sonnets
(unstilted by the form) from Jack Collom.

CAUTION!--(Vol 1 #4, winter '91), PO Box 4694, Richmond VA 23220.
64pp., $3.95. "Art & Literature Like a Frog in a Blender".
Mostly poetry, spanning a wide range of voice & quality. Honest
rather than intellectual, and (despite the name) not "cautious"
at all. Credits in the editors box include thanx to Naropa
Institute, Jim Beam, and a slew of noise-rock bands. Annoying
use of computer gimmicky type-twisting fr the poem titles, but
that's a pet peeve of mine, so forget I sed it...

CENTRAL PARK--(#19/20, spring/fall '91), Box 1446, New York NY
10023. 344 pp., $9. Their 10th anniversary issue, this deserves
to be spread out on yr coffee table if you have one. Book sized,
perfect bound, dense with material that deserves that kind of
permanence. The poetry mostly L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E influenced (or
maybe "post-modern", if that means anything). Essays on Chris
Columbus & genocide, "disappeared" persons in Chile, Salmon
Rushdie; several on the Gulf war (including one by Noam Chomsky).
Serious people taking their world seriously, and working to
know/change it.

DUMPSTER TIMES--(#11, March '92), PO Box 44308, Akron OH 44308.
48 pp., $2. Anarchist magazine, featuring articles about the
tyranny of work, war, religion, art, and gender (among other
things). Editor Wendy S. Duck keeps it personal & real-life--
frinstance, sharing her inner turmoil over eschewing a life of
luxury/wage slavery & health insurance to keep (mostly) doing
what she wants. This issue has lots of reprints of articles from
elsewhere; past numbers have had more poetry & "art".

THE FACE OF THE CONGRESS--(#2, Feb. '92), Fagagaga, Box 1382,
Youngstown OH 44501. 20 pp., $1. 1992 is the year of the
WorldWide Networker Congress, a conceptual group project which
declares that "where 2 or more artist/networkers meet, there a
networker congress will take place." This publication documents
some of those meetings, primarily with pictures (hand-drawn &
otherwise) of the participants. It's a MailArt Thing, You
Wouldn't Understand...

FISH DRUM--(#5), 626 Kathryn Ave., Santa Fe NM 87501. 45 pp.,
$2.50. Poems strongly rooted in place, primarily the Southwest.
The psychic juice is tapped from all over (Zen & mystical
Christianity, Emily Dickinson & bluesman Robert Johnson), but the
resulting perspective is no less unified. Miriam Sagan, Joy
Harjo, and ex-Clevelander Linda Monacelli Johnson all prominently

FISH WRAP--(#3), 921 1/2 24th Ave., Seattle WA 98122. 36 pp.,
$3.50. Their "Fishy Business" issue is a batch of multicolored
business cards, a poem per, elegantly packed into a red velvet
pouch. How did Ez say--"gists & piths"?--if that's yr definition
of poetry, these are IT. Single-word works of geof huth,
verbovisuals from Toledo's Joel Lipman, striking minimalism from
Joseph Keppler; Crag Hill and Skip Fox also faves, but all
deserve a read. Get 2 copies, one to keep, one to leave behind
with yr tip at the coffeeshop.

FOUND STREET--1403 S. Santa Fe #6, Los Angeles CA 90021. Not
sure if this is a serial, or a series of chaps--maybe call 'em
"scraps". "Currently accepting submissions of visual poetry,
verobvisual art & experimental writing/drawing... all work must
be camera-ready, B/W and fit within a 7x8 1/2 format". First
install is BRAIN DAMAGED FURNITURE by Larry Tomoyasu, minimally
detourned graphics from '40s era advertising.

HEAVEN BONE--(#9, winter/spring '92), PO Box 10981, Chester NY
10918. 64 pp., $5. The poetry here is well crafted, but content
seems to dominate over form--political & ecological concerns, and
god (in a wide range of guises) appear throughout. Contributors
range from the pros (Marge Piercy leads off, Bukowski & Antler
here too) to the rest of us; the presentation definately on the
professional side--very slick. Contents include: a travel joural
thru India, Ren Daumal in translation, a halucinogenic-mushroom
story, some reviews. Assembled so as to lead you thru, one to
the next.

IMPETUS--(#20, Aug. 91), 4975 Comanche Trail, Stow OH 44224. 70
pp., $3. Close enough to Cleveland for us to claim as our own
hidden gem. Cheryl Townsend edits a fine and visceral mag,
direct descendant in look and feel to the mimeo-underground of my
youth. Mainstays of this from-th-heart/land poemfest: Androlla,
Huffstickler, Sollfrey, Kittel, Oberk, Nimmo, Lifshin;
Clevelanders (& ex-) Ben Gulyas, Joyce Shipley, Mark Weber; a
slew of others. Solid review pages, plus plugs throughtout for
publications & zines of similar ilk.

IN THE MAIL--(March '92), PO Box 4857, Washington DC 20008. 16
pp., trade for art. Ex-Clevelander Tim Harding has revived
"WordLess Press" and this, his long dormant mail-art document.
Xeroxing & redistributing the various images he receives, this
has a conversational feeling, a circle of friends sittin' around
& shootin' the breeze. To get in, you've gotta hold up your end
of the conversation...

INTENT--(Vol 3 #2&3, summer/fall '91), 201 Crestwood, Buffalo NY
14214. 36 pp., $15/yr. Heady newsletter of critical thinking,
Primarily Literary. About half devoted to a theme,
"Alphabetics"; the rest rambling around points of perstistant
interest (most notably, Charles Olson) in review, comment and
occasional example.

LOST & FOUND TIMES--(#29, Jan. '92), 137 Leland Ave., Columbus OH
43214. 52 pp., $4. Language mangled on every level, from
meaning to spelling, syntax to vocabulary to grammer to
orthography....all laid to waste, finally maybe ready to "make it
new". Not everything new is an improvement. That's why we call
this stuff experimental--sometimes experiments don't succeed, but
you won't know without trying. People who like this stuff
(myself amoung) really like it; those who don't are usually stuck
trying to figure what it "means". Hint: the "means" art the

MALCONTENT--(#29, Dec. '91), PO Box 703, Navesink NJ 07752. 58
pp., $3. This is the 1st annual collation ish--each contributor
sends in 100 copies of their work, Laura adds cover & comment
pages, binds 'em up, and go. Variable results as you'd expect,
with a leaning towards ruff edges & rock'n'roll (even an
interview with now-defunct Adrenalin O.D.). At one point, editor
Laura Poll rails against poets sending formal/form cover-letters
with their submits--seems like she'd rather have a genuine
personal relationship with her authors & audience, rather than
the ususal "professional distance". Upcoming themes: "Sharing";
"Does it Hurt to be Alone?".

MOTEL--(#5, fall '91), Box 65402, Station F, Vancouver BC Canada
V5N 5P3. 32 pp., $4. Exquisite poetry, but so spacious & open
it sometimes threaten to fall apart. Held together (like the
mag) with a constancy of tone, & physical conjoining that
threatens not to stay on its own--requires an active reader to
hold it together. Not for those who need to be spoon-fed. Ray
Dipalma the heavy L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E name here, Abigail Child
weighing in with particularly striking work.

PAPER RADIO--(spring '92) 2615 N. 4th St Suite 797, Coeur d'Alene
ID 83814. 48 pp., $3. Cleanly produced mag of writing (approx
50/50 poetry/prose, by weight) and art. Much of the work is
precise & well crafted, without relying on the homogonized
MFA/workshop "image", & "voice" stylings... Several folks
singled out & featured, with a selection of several poems
apiece--helps give a context to their work. Also nice to see
prose poetry given some prominance.

POETRY MOTEL--(#18, fall '92), 1619 Jefferson, Duluth MN 55812.
52 pp., $5.95. Back after an extended vacation, and welcome.
Some of the regular guys still around--Ron Androla, Seth Wade,
Todd Moore, & the editors-- still working drinking & talking
hard. Same old cut & paste layout, with recycled 50's magazine
graphics plus mayan hieroglyphs. In the end, Jelly Bobby & Mr.
Jenkins try to get into the Naked Sex Place...

POETRY USA--(#23, summer '91), 2569 Maxwell Ave., Oakland CA
94601. 28 pp., $1. A quarterly tabloid with a political
awareness. Sections devoted to poetry by prisoners, the
homeless, and young people, as well an international page and a
regular contest series. Subscribers help to support a program
that privides free copies to folks on the street, who can then
resell 'em instead of plain panhandling. Maybe not dressed up
fancy, but the poetry is straight up--not putting on airs and not
talking down to anyone, either.

REBEAT--(#1, spring '92), PO Box 13387, Salem OR 97309. 24 pp.
Fine looking tabloid that really utilizes the news-print format--
big type, lottsa space, a genuine vision. Several stories with
fresh language & twisty points of view--reminds a little of
Brautegan, but not so neat. Free locally, send a coupla stamps
at least.

RETROFUTURISM--(#16, March '92), PO Box 227, Iowa City IA 52244.
48 pp., $3. Still coming out, but sporadically, during the Art
Strike* (1990-1993, the Years Without Art--buy now!). News &
views of censorship, plagarism, and assorted strains in
networking. Fairly political critiques of mass culture and herd
thinking, in both mainstream society and the "art" "underground".
Cynical & idealistic, which aren't so different after all. Also
available, the broadside series Yawn, a "Sporadic Critique of
Culture"-- send stamps.

SLIPSTREAM--(#11), PO Box 2071, New Market Station, Niagra Falls
NY 14301. 130 pp., $5. Starts off with some powerful poems
about the Bomb--Americana, but not the kind you see on the
bloodless faces and hands in the advertisement. City & truckstop
poems, neigboorhood bar &, car poems, whore poems and war poems.
Short stories in the same vein. Bukowski weighing in with 8
pages, he's in the company of friends. Lotta bang for yr buck.

SPLITCITY--(#1, summer '92), PO Box 110171, Cleveland OH 44111.
20 pp., free. Cleveland has always been split: east & west,
high-brow & beer-belly, white & black & blue... These folks
split from the Cleveland Review to persue their own vision of
free poetry, & did a damn fine job. Xerox & cutup, gut-bucket
poetry, & a hilarious attack on Poetry Slams. Hope they do

TRANSMOG--(#4), Rt. 6 Box 138, Charleston WV 25311. 6 pp., SASE.
Editor Ficus Strangulensis is an afficianado of computer-
generated word-bending, and this newsletter presents the results
of his various experiments. Random or alleotorically generated
poetry, or computer cut-ups of found text--past issues have
featured de-readings of movie listings, recipes, and noozepaper
headlines ("Cyclone Deaths Black And Whited Against Hangers!").
The results are weird indeed, sorta surrealist, but with the
heart & soul of IBM.

WRAY--(#2), PO Box 91052, Cleveland OH 44101. 84 pp., $3. The
point of departure here is Art, and from that point moving out to
writing, performance etc. Not as rigidly "designed" as their 1st
issue, but still nice & visual. Includes mostly-local writing,
replies to their 2nd survey (questions like: "If you had an extra
soul, what would you do with it?"), and a long interview with
Charlotte Pressler. Their 3rd issue should be out by the time
you read this.

End TapRoot 8/92 zine reviews
Partial thread listing: