Friday, March 23, 2012

Aimless Reading: The S's, Part 3.2 (Jerome Sala)

I Am Not A Juvenile Delinquent
Sala, Jerome
I Am Not A Juvenile Delinquent

Given to me by the author. Inscribed:

For Mike
From Jerome


I remember when Jerome gave this to me. I came down to the city and went out to dinner with him and Elaine. Afterwards, they took me back to their apartment on Houston St. and showed me all of their books.

They'd both been part of the punk-art-poetry scene in Chicago in the late seventies and early eighties. This book is a great example of the aesthetic. It feels like a hybrid of a poetry book and an underground magazine. It was published by Stare Press in Chicago in 1985.

On the back cover, it says the price of the book is "Just $5.00." More awesome than the book design or the price, however, is the author photo on the back.

Poetry needs more mullets.

from I Am Not A Juvenile Delinquent

The Theory of the Avant-Garde

looking over the cover of The Theory of the Avant-Garde
we realize it's been us all along who've got this incredible
           nostalgia for the avant-garde
some people like the idea of simonized cars, empty parking lots, 

          "church keys," psychedelic music, beer
but that all makes us puke like so much else
the people rattling their bags in the hallway make us puke
the thump downstairs–someone getting kicked in the ass or 
          head beat into the wall–makes us puke
because we can no longer believe we're different from them 

         and this makes us puke
and we now hate everyone we see, and everything we read, because we're 
          jealous that it's so uplifting
and this makes us puke
but we've got to take a breather here
because the sun seems to be going down–just like in Africa,
and we've got to turn on the lights which make us puke

before we go blind

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