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    ISBN: 9780889226883 | Paperback

    96 pages | Pub. Date: 20120415
    6.00 W × 9.00 H × 0.4 D inches
    Backlist | Poetry | Bisac: POE000000
    Rights: WORLD


Widely noted for the popularity of his dynamic performances, Michael McClure has been celebrated since his first poetry event. At twenty-two years old, in San Francisco’s legendary Six Gallery, McClure, Gary Snyder and Allen Ginsberg gave their first poetry reading—Ginsberg read “Howl” that night. McClure’s writing followed his deepening environmental awareness and biological studies, and he became an outspoken advocate, through his essays, music, theatre and novels, for the protection of all living beings.

When McClure’s Specks was first published in 1985 by Talonbooks, it was a revelation in terms of its transcending the proprioceptive poetic methodology of Charles Olson and entering an Aristotelian realm of metaphysical questions that alchemically combined matters both scientific and mystical. In this much-anticipated return, with incisive and bombastic projective verse, McClure’s stance in the face of futurity is even more topical, as the senses of the physical-poetic body explore its properties, powers and limitations, expanding forth as the benevolent love child of its own consciousness.

Specks assumes the form of a blastula, offering a poetic model of embryonic development that arises from the cellular division known as “cleavage.” Specks presents groupings of ideas that mimic and challenge one another in a deep biological state. With mind aglow in recognition of muscular imagination and the intelligence of the sensorium in all its unapologetic tonality, McClure’s luminous journey leaps with the grace of Muhammad Ali and Fred Astaire, and tempts the reader into the mysterious abyss of dark energy that Federico García Lorca calls duende.

“McClure’s poetry is a blob of protoplasmic energy.”
—Allen Ginsberg

“McClure’s poetry and prose is one of the more remarkable achievements in recent American literature.”
—Times Literary Supplement

By Michael McClure

Michael McClure is a novelist, musician, playwright and poet who came to prominence in the 1950s as a central figure of the beat generation. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Guggenheim Fellowship, an Obie Award for Best New American Play, a Rockefeller Grant for Playwriting, the Josephine Miles Literary Award and the Alfred Jarry Award. He has written more than twenty plays, which are regularly performed in the United States and abroad.

Read more about Michael McClure

Foreword by Paul E. Nelson

SPLAB founder Paul E. Nelson wrote Organic Poetry (VDM Verlag, Germany, 2008) & a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, Washington, A Time Before Slaughter (Apprentice House, 2010). In 26 years of radio he interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, Wanda Coleman, George Bowering, Joanne Kyger, Jerome Rothenberg & others, including many Northwest poets. He lives in Seattle and writes at least one American Sentence every day.

Read more about Paul E. Nelson

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news | 2012-06-12
Ray Manzarek and Michael McClure – The Piano Poems: Live From San Francisco

…published a reprint of McClure’s book Specks. …