Kendra Steiner Editions

September 10, 2007

Michael Layne Heath and Christopher Cunningham join KSE family of poets

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:05 pm

I’m very excited to announce that two of my favorite working poets—-MICHAEL LAYNE HEATH (from San Francisco) and CHRISTOPHER CUNNINGHAM (from the greater Atlanta area)—-have agreed to join our Kendra Steiner Editions family. We’re still working out the details, but chapbooks may be arriving in as soon as 2 or 3 months.

Michael has been writing for 20+ years, although he’s better known for his music writing than for his poetry. He was a pioneering fanzine writer/publisher back in the late 1970’s (I started my own punk/psych fanzine, INNER MYSTIQUE, in 1981, so in a sense I was following in his footsteps), and he’s continued to do all kinds of writing since then. Presently, he may be best-known for the liner notes he’s done for the Four Men With Beards/Water label (including such legendary albums as  Television’s MARQUEE MOON and Nelson Riddle’s LOLITA soundtrack). However, he is in addition a fine poet with two books to his credit: PUT IT THIS WAY and COUNT TO FIVE AND TELL THE TRUTH, both published by Feudal Gesture Press in 2006. Our books are also sitting near each other in the stacks at City Lights!!! He is able to capture San Francisco life so vividly I can taste it, and he manages to critique the BS and hypocrisy he sees without being judgmental or condescending or holier-than-thou. His work has a great flow, and he’s able to write about music and to integrate musical references into his work in a manner that really works—-man, is THAT rare! Michael does readings in the Bay Area, and I would love to read new chapbooks by him regularly–so I’m stepping in to see that happens by offering him an outlet here at Kendra Steiner Editions. Great to have you aboard, Michael!

Christopher Cunningham (no relation to the academic poet of the same name—-read two lines of one of OUR Christopher’s poems and you’ll know the difference!) is somewhat better known as he’s one of the main movers and shakers of the Guerilla Poetics Project AND he has published a number of superb chapbooks in recent years including THRU THE HEART OF THIS ANIMAL LIFE, from Liquid Paper Press ( http://www.onr.com/user/jwhagins/chaps.html );  AND STILL THE NIGHT LEFT TO GO (a unique two-volume set, featuring both verse and correspondence that sets forth the philosophy behind the poet’s art and role in society, published by Bottle of Smoke Press —- http://www.bospress.net/    ) ; and, most recently, FLOWERS IN THE SHADOW OF THE STORM,  just issued a few months ago by Sunnyoutside (http://www.sunnyoutside.com/releases/020/flowers.html ).  If you can imagine a poet who writes with precision and understatement and elegance, yet at the same time kicks out the jams and has attitude to burn, CC is your man. I never thought I’d find a writer who has, simultaneously, the best qualities of both Hemingway and Cid Corman–but of course he’s much more than that. His lean, finely sculpted verse radiates with sense imagery that cuts into the reader like a fishhook. Life is a struggle, and CC is there on the frontline–getting it all down for the reader but still engaging in the fight himself.  Does it sound like I appreciate his work??? Welcome to you also, Chris.

In the big picture, Kendra Steiner Editions may be a micro-press, but we offer a powerful poetry line-up:

MICHAEL LAYNE HEATH,

CHRISTOPHER CUNNINGHAM,

MISTI RAINWATER-LITES,

ZACHARY C. BUSH,

DOUG DRAIME,

BRAD KOHLER,

LUIS CUAUHTEMOC BERRIOZABAL,

K.M. DERSLEY,

MARK WEBER,

MICHAEL CERAOLO,

THOMAS MICHAEL McDADE,

MICHAEL CASEY,

DAVID KEENAN,

BYRON COLEY,  and

STUART CRUTCHFIELD.

Now, it’s back to work on Next Exit: Four…

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