Kendra Steiner Editions (Bill Shute)

August 29, 2007

needed: more poetry books by Doug Draime

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 5:06 pm

I first remember seeing poet Doug Draime’s name in underground magazines and newspapers back in the 1970’s…although I later found out he’d been publishing since the late 1960’s. There was a lot to appreciate in his work: the variety of voices and styles in which he could work equally well; the strong working-class orientation; the street wisdom; the open and tolerant perspective; the brilliant use of detail; the way he could alternate the tragic and the comic…and weave them together into the human. I looked forward to seeing his name in print, but in that pre-internet age, it was hard to actually keep track of his appearances.

Doug finally appeared in his own chapbooks in this new century, and his UNOCCUPIED ZONE (Pitchfork Press, 2004) was my constant companion in the 2004-2006 period. In fact, I wanted another Doug Draime book so much that I actually created one of my own. Since Doug has a lot of poetry available online, I found a lot of it, pasted it into Microsoft Word and in a consistent font and format, printed it out, and put it into a binder. I created MY OWN 40-page book of Doug Draime poetry, and it too was a great companion.  What the world needed, I felt and still feel today, is more poetry books by Doug Draime. Kendra Steiner Editions was proud to bring another Draime book into the world with EYESTONE, one of our most popular and praised books, and Doug has collaborated on two others: NEXT EXIT: ONE, where he was paired with me; and the new NEXT EXIT: THREE, where he is paired with Misti Rainwater-Lites, who IMHO has many of the same qualities that I saw in Doug all those years ago. If you want to read more of Doug’s work, here are some links to a number of fine online poems. Crack open a micro-brew beer, settle back, and enjoy:





from The 3rd PAGE:


from JUKED:

from THE BEAT:

Besides Doug’s new KSE book, NEXT EXIT: THREE (now available for $4.00 ppd. in North America…see below for address), Doug will have another book featuring 30 of his poems coming out in a few months from Tainted Coffee Press (a division of Zygote in my Coffee). That book will be half Doug and half Michael Estabrook, which sounds like an exciting combination. Thanks, Doug, for all the years of inspiration!

August 28, 2007

Byron Coley/Thurston Moore on Kendra Steiner Editions

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:15 pm

Some kind words from Byron Coley and Thurston Moore in the new September issue of ARTHUR magazine, probably America’s foremost alternative culture magazine (filling the void left by the late FORCED EXPOSURE). Kendra Steiner Editions has gotten two small positive write-ups in previous issues of ARTHUR, but this detailed celebration of our summer releases totally took me by surprise. We don’t believe in presskits or bios here–our work speaks for itself–but if we did, this review would be right at the front. I’ve transcribed the review (silently correcting a few mis-spellings of author names) below:      


“We weren’t planning to write about KENDRA STEINER EDITIONS again so soon, but what the heck! There’s a new batch, and they will not be denied. Bill Shute’s ROCKET ATTACK USA is the first volume in the “Cinema Poetry Series”, and it offers a splattered cubist vision of science fiction hell. Michael Ceraolo’s MORE EUCLID CREEK is half an ode to a dead mother/neighborhood, and half about what a drag it is to work. Very Cleveland, these poems. And very good, too. Doug Draime and Bill Shute’s NEXT EXIT: ONE is great. The poets write in turn, each appearing to detail the things you can find (or not) near the various borders of various states. An excellent conceptual pairing.  Michael Casey’s THE BOPPER is a funny set of poems about office life, which may make you shiver in recognition of traits you wish you’d been able to forget. K. M. Dersley’s RETROSPECTIVE FORECASTS is very English in its language, but seems rather more American in its rhythms and loser imagery. We need to read it a few more times to really figure it out, but that won’t be a burden by any stretch. Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal’s WITHOUT PEACE is a strong piece of work, representing a cycle of eight poems that feel as though they’re about schizophrenia. In all, this is another really admirable batch of work from Kendra Steiner Editions–a company that we daresay has probably issued more volumes of high-quality poetry in the last year than most publishers will in a lifetime. The books are small, side-stapled, and created with an eye towards allowing the average dude (or dudette) a way to get into poetry without having to spend a lot of money. Each of the collections they release is bite-sized, but capable of supplying enough vital STUFF to keep your brain chewing for a good long while. Don’t not check this stuff out.”


Thanks, guys. And speaking of poetry, there’s a wonderful section of this new Arthur magazine, accompanying a fascinating interview with Yoko Ono about her Fluxus years (among other things), where Coley and Moore have composed a Tanka poem about each of Ono’s albums! You can read the magazine free on-line as a PDF file at   . The review is found on page 53, and the Yoko Ono poems are on page 35. Both of these are on the RIGHT hand side of the page, so you’ll need to blow the magazine up to a readable size and then scroll over to the right hand side to read the pieces. Thanks for the coverage, gentlemen!

Do I need to add that all the above books listed in the review are available for $4.00 each, 3 for $10 postpaid in North America? Check payable to Bill Shute, 8200 Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas, 78233.

Our chapbook #64 is completed and should be available in a few days: NEXT EXIT: THREE by Doug Draime and Misti Rainwater-Lites. I’ll be back in touch about that book soon…

August 21, 2007

a poem to celebrate the new school year

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 12:07 am

Now that schools are starting to get back in session, I thought I’d trot out this old piece of mine, “Just Like That,”  from the chapbook BLUE BOTTLE. Hope you enjoy it…(I’ve reformatted it a bit because the original layout cannot be replicated on this blog…the content is still there, however)



every time         

                     a fresh graduate               

                                               of San Antonio College                    

                                                                                  crosses the stage                           

                                                                                                               into the waiting arms 

                                                              of the US Military   

   or the Border Patrol    

or the FBI              

          or the Dallas police force     

ensnared by a recruiter’s lofty phrases    

and bankable promises          

(paid rent          

 paid health care          

 paid education          


a mother’s heart shatters    

  a father “comes to terms” with the situation          

alcohol sales rise  

a missing piece is fitted into     the military-industrial complex   jigsaw puzzle 

the final picture can be projected         but, fortunately, not yet fully seen                   not yet

August 17, 2007

Doug Draime and Misti Rainwater-Lites, the ultimate poetry Tag Team!!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 9:48 pm

Just finished editing our next chapbook, due September 1 or so, NEXT EXIT: THREE, featuring Doug Draime AND Misti Rainwater-Lites. Like the previous two NEXT EXIT collections, this features short poems exclusive to this project that focus on small towns. Doug was co-writer (with me) on the first volume, and his poems were so hard-hitting and achingly beautiful, and he enjoyed doing it so much, that I asked him to put together material for another volume. As for Misti, anyone who’s read her work knows that she is a master of detail and particularity, and no one writes more powerfully about the hellish soul-destroying aspects of smalltown Texas life, so I was ecstatic when Misti agreed to join the project. Travel with Misti and Doug through such American towns as

Wheatland, Indiana

Dodge City, Kansas

Nederland, Texas

Chico, Texas

Freelandville, Indiana

Beverly Hills, California

Bridgeport, Texas

East St. Louis, Illinois

Fredericksburg, Texas

Wichita Falls, Texas

Seymour, Texas

Big Sur, California

12 exciting new poems from two of America’s most exciting poets…for only $4.00 ppd. in North America. This will be a limited edition of under 90 copies, so act fast. Check or well-concealed cash to Bill Shute, 8200 Pat Booker Rd. #399, San Antonio, Texas 78233. You can send your order now and it will be shipped on September 1. And why not buy some of our other fine poetry chapbooks? Scroll down for a list posted in July. The more you buy, the cheaper the per-unit price. Doug and Misti are surely two of my five favorite working poets–to have them together in one chapbook is, for me, a dream come true.

#63, TELESMA CHARGING, now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 2:21 pm

As of today, 8/17/07, KSE #63, TELESMA CHARGING by Stuart Crutchfield and Bill Shute is available in an edition of 37 copies. This is volume 24 of our Sound Library Series (poems which are inspired by particular musical pieces), and our inspiration this time around was the album TELESMA (by the way, that’s Greek for “Talisman”) by San Francisco-based AXOLOTL. I hate musical labels (as I hate poetry labels or people labels, etc.), but I suppose one would put AXOLOTL’s music in the ambient noise/psychedelic drone/industrial soundscape genre. The multi-layered soundscapes created by AXOLOTL are truly consciousness-expanding and mind-bending, and Stuart and I felt that we could create some interesting “parallel works” growing out of the music. We asked Axolotl’s Karl Bauer for his permission, which he gave, and we started working on the project earlier in 2007. After countless e-mails and Microsoft Word attachments (the way poets from Texas and Scotland work together on a suite of poems!), Stu and I got this in final form, I added some vintage apocalyptic illustrations from an old public-domain fundamentalist screed, and voila! The friends who have read this say that it enters Hieronymous Bosch/Harry Crosby/William Blake (perhaps the reference to Urizen at the poem’s climactic point helped lead to this!) territory, which is not surprising considering the source material. There is a deep spiritual base to Axolotl’s music, and we tried to tap into those same Gnostic roots when composing this work. Stu and I have issued three collaborative chapbooks prior to this, and in terms of structure/form, I’d say this one most resembles PYTHAGORON TWO,  rather than STREAM or WINDOW ON THE SEA. The six-page poem also includes references to Frippertronics, the original release of the film ERASERHEAD, magus/artist/archivist Harry Smith, and Dylan’s Never-Ending-Tour. Who could ask for more than that…and all in six pages! $4.00 postpaid in North America.

Stu’s next project for us will be an all-Scotland edition of NEXT EXIT!

August 15, 2007

poem of the day

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 10:38 pm

I wanted to share this poem from Michael Layne Heath’s chapbook “Put It This Way”:



I wept

because I had

no shoes


then I met a man

who had never heard

“Psychotic Reaction”

–Michael Layne Heath (May Day 2005)

August 12, 2007

back from New England–chapbooks 61 and 62 out now

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 11:31 pm

Greetings everyone. Had a great time in Massachusetts and Rhode Island…and of course found much poetic inspiration there (more on that later). Among the many highlights were walking along the Merrimack River in Lawrence, Massachusetts, with poet Michael Casey; spending an exciting evening at the soon-to-be-history Raynham-Taunton Greyhound Park (maybe I can talk Brad Kohler into collaborating with me again on a dogracing-related sequel to our earlier EXACTA BOX???); eating whole-bellied fried clams in Boston and “New York System Weiners” in Providence; and spending most of a day at the Rhode Island School of Design. I had computer access a few times during the trip, and used it to work with Zachary C. Bush, going over some poems he is writing for a future KSE chapbook. He is a dynamo and can work in many styles equally well, and his poetry is always challenging and never what one expects. I’m excited to have him on the Kendra Steiner team. He has two other chapbooks out this year, one of which just came out yesterday! That one is WE SWALLOW(ED) SPIDERS IN OUR SLEEP, published by Pudding House–available for $10 plus $2.50 postage. Send an e-mail to jen (at)puddinghouse (dot) com and she’ll tell you how to order.

The first new book is PITH by Stuart Crutchfield, KSE #61. Hailing from the harsh Western Scotland countryside and now living in Glasgow, Stu has done six KSE chapbooks so far, all of which are different yet equally mind-blowing. His solo chaps are MARCH (rooted in horror films and horror comics, and an entry in our “Sound Library” series), SHACK SIMPLE (a tribute to Lew Welch, but using Scotland instead of the US West Coast), and most recently THE CIRCUS CROWS HAVE LANDED. He and I have also done three collaborative works: PYTHAGORON TWO (the first in the KSE “Creel Pone Sound Study Series”), WINDOW ON THE SEA (a parallel-text work set in New Orleans, inspired by John Ashbery’s “Litany” from AS WE KNOW), and STREAM (SALMON AND BLOOD), which is one of our most popular chapbooks, the second printing of which is virtually sold out. In STREAM, Stu’s experiences working in a salmon cannery are juxtaposed with my experiences selling my blood plasma.                                            

Like all of Stuart’s work, PITH–which uses stonemasonry as its central motif–contains both dizzying surreal flights and rich-textured details from Scottish life. There is no one like him. He was the first writer I asked to join Kendra Steiner Editions, and he has been a core partner since then. PITH will be available by Tuesday, August 14. $4.00 postpaid in North America–Europeans should order from Volcanic Tongue, which should have the book in stock in two weeks.      

Finally, KSE #62, my newest chapbook, LARKSPUR VARIATIONS (FOR FRANCIS BACON), is a six-poem suite written during my first week in New England under the influence of the paintings of Francis Bacon. In form, it is not unlike some of my previous non-narrative pieces such as SYMPHONIE ROUGE. As with IN PERSPECTIVE, this will be a limited run, although of 19 copies instead of 15. Exclusive distribution will be through Volcanic Tongue, although I will have maybe three copies for sale to the first three people sending $4.00. New England provided me with a number of other seed ideas, and I hope some of those will come to fruition over the next few months. Stay tuned.

The orders that were received while I was away will be sent out on Tuesday. Thanks for your support.

Talk to you soon.  A list of all presently available chapbooks, along with ordering details, was posted in July and can be found elsewhere on this blog.                                                                                                                                                                                            

August 2, 2007

on hiatus, but still working–and a tribute to Michael Casey

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 6:55 am

I’m going to New England for about two weeks, so there will be no new posts during that period, but I deserve a vacation after getting out EIGHT new chapbooks in June and July.

Please continue to send book orders while I’m gone–I’ll ship out any orders when I get back on Monday the 13th.

While in Massachusetts, I will be hooking up with one of my favorite poets and now a member of the Kendra Steiner Editions team, Michael Casey, author of the classic 1972 poetry collection OBSCENITIES. Mike is that rare writer who has basically created his own genre of literature. His poems in the voice of semi-articulate, but beautifully expressive, characters–often in military or workplace situations–are funny, heartbreaking, and dead-on accurate. Lots of writers talk about voice and persona–any Casey poem is a master class in the subject.

Here are a few samples from his 1996 book MILLRAT:

If you have not yet scored a copy of his KSE book THE BOPPER, pick one up while you can. These are workplace poems set in an anonymous office. It’s interesting that although we spend 1/3 (or more) of our waking hours in the workplace, there are not more poets mining this rich vein. I’ve always been an observer on any job I’ve had, and obviously Michael Casey has too. He wrote an interesting essay on the subject of workplace poetry which is worth clicking on and reading:

Two recent Casey chapbooks you must get are PERMANENT PARTY, published by March Street Press ( and CINDI’S FUR COAT, published by the Chuckwagon ( .

I’ll be taking some work with me on my trip. Later in the fall we’ll be offering some new chapbooks featuring Misti Rainwater-Lites, Brad Kohler, Zachary C. Bush, Stuart Crutchfield, and Doug Draime, and I’ll be working on those books while I’m on the road. The most exciting news as far as I’m concerned is that we will be offering a joint Doug Draime/Misti Rainwater-Lites chapbook in October, an entry in the ongoing NEXT EXIT series.

Check back the week of August 13th…

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