Woolgathering

Fresh Print

Some new books
to please the avid reader:

Patti Smith is an icon and a touchstone for hundreds of thousands of us… from the arrival of “Horses” in 1975 to the 2010 release of her memoir, Just Kids, and her HSBG appearance that same year, and the many stops along the way…

In 1992, a talismanic little book bearing her name and called Woolgathering appeared on the counter at places like City Lights & Moe’s, on cafe tables at the Trieste, in squalid rooms at the Chelsea Hotel… places where the tribe tended to gather to muse, to share a meal, to conceive of new modes of expression…

Woolgathering was one in a series of small (3″x4″) handmade books put out by Raymond Foye & Francesco Clemente’s Hanuman Books, printed at Kalakshetra, near Madras (now Chennai), India, under the supervision of George Scrivani.  Like Patti herself, the gem-like Hanuman books comprise a cultural touchstone… along with the mid-70’s Capra Chapbooks and Sparrow pamphlets, 1950s doo wop 45s… so many little artifacts of our cultural commons.

New Directions Press has been traveling this cultural trail all along the way, and New Directions has now brought this book back to the fore in a small and beautiful volume that’s bound to be treasured by those who resonate with its message and its creator.

Woolgathering is a pastiche of prose and poetry… a meditation on Patti’s own tribe, a race of cloud dwellers… on the “fierce, vital pleasures” of cloud watching, stargazing, wandering…  A scattering of her own photos and a new autobiographical piece, “Two Worlds,” have been added.  It’s the kind of treasure that reassures us that the book — the thing itself, and the spirit it can contain — will always hold sway over and fuel our imaginations, dreams, aspirations and hopes… like the clouds themselves…

Comments

  1. Tisa Walden says:

    Marsha Campbell’s “Revolutions Per Minute” wonderful!