Kendra Steiner Editions (Bill Shute)

October 25, 2008

october into november 2008 at KSE

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As things get cooler in the fall, meaning in south texas 60s and 70s instead of 90s, I hope things will be heating up here at KSE on the poetry front.

MK Chavez and John Sweet‘s NEXT EXIT: NINE came out last week and has in just one week attracted a lot of attention. Two thirds of the copies are already in circulation, so you’d better act fast on this one. Really. 

My collaboration with A. J. Kaufmann, BEYOND THE BLUE ROCKS: MEDITATIONS ON THE TIBETAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, has been getting great response from both customers and fellow poets, Doug Draime calling it my best collaborative work ever. AJ is a great person to work with, and as different as we are, we’re very much on the same wavelength poetically. In his new apartment in Berlin, he’s listening over and over again to his MONO copy of The 13th Floor Elevators album “Easter Everywhere,” and anyone who’s ever heard the mind-blowing opening track “Slip Inside This House” knows that there is no better model for a poet than to wade in the water of that profound song over and over. And over. And over. He’s also listening to some CD’s I sent him of the hypnotic, underrated British bluesman Duffy Power for our next collaboration, BLUES FOR DUFFY POWER, which we’ll be working on in November and December. If you get a chance, score a copy of either Power’s 1965 album with Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated, SKY HIGH, or the recent collection of BBC broadcasts, SKY BLUES. Expect BLUES FOR DUFFY POWER in the first quarter of 2009.

Right now, I’m working on a collaboration with Zachary C. Bush—-the final volume in our 10-volume “Creel Pone Sound Study Series”—-called Shanti, inspired by the classic electronic music mind-fry SHANTI by Jean-Claude Eloy.  Expect Shanti sometime in December. I should be finishing up segments of that next weekend while I’m in North Texas visiting my son Eric. I’ve written works such as COMPANIONSHIP OF THE PLUM and IN PERSPECTIVE (the latter chosen as one of the best reads of 2007 in Arthur Magazine!) while in North Texas, so I’m hoping lightning will strike again with this one. Wish me luck…

In November we’ll be rolling out the multi-poet compilation KSE LAST POEMS, featuring an all-star line-up of 10 poets from three continents, and later that month, Misti Rainwater-Lites’s NEXT EXIT: TEN, the final volume in that series of poems rooted in location. As someone who has lived in Texas for nearly 20 years now, I can assure you that NO writer nails Texas the way Misti does. Although I live in America’s 7th largest city, San Antonio, whenever we’re in smalltown Texas, Mary Anne and I often turn to one another and say, “wow, this is exactly  the way Misti’s poems depicted it!!!” Yes, there is a beauty and surface charm to small towns, and rural life offers a closeness to the soil which is spiritually intoxicating, but there’s also a cold chill and an undercurrent of violence that’s frightening. Barack Obama suggested that in his remark about people “clinging to guns and God” a number of months back, and you remember the firestorm that hit after those remarks. As always, Misti’s poems in NEXT EXIT: TEN are rich with details and particulars about Texas life, and by extension American life, and by extension life in general—-details that will have the reader right in the scene, smelling the smells and hearing the sounds. As the ad for some lowgrade professional wrestling movie back in the 1980s read, “it’s disgustingly real !!!” Look out for NEXT EXIT: TEN, released sometime around Thanksgiving.

December will feature a collection of brand-new work from Los Angeles’s LUIS CUAUHTEMOC BERRIOZABAL called STILL HUMAN, beautiful and insightful lyric poems written under the spell of such world-poetry greats as Hikmet, Vallejo, and Neruda.

And as we enter the new year, we’ll be starting off with a bang, not a whimper. Around January 1, A. J. Kaufmann‘s first chapbook of written-in-Berlin poems, SATORI IN BERLIN (X-Berg Songs), will appear, as will a collection of new and dynamic poetry from Jack Henry called EMPTY HOUSES. It’s quite different from what you may think Jack Henry’s poetry is like, but Jack is a multi-talented man full of surprises and he’s working in a more kaleidoscopic vein in his KSE debut chapbook. It will be a strong release for January 2009. Beyond his own powerful poetry, Jack’s been doing great work for poetry with his ROB & JACK AMERICA internet radio show and with his d/e/a/d/b/e/a/t press. I know that Jack, like yours truly, is spread too thin and has too many responsibilities, but he realizes that IF WE DON’T DO IT NOW, IT WON’T GET DONE, so he gets it done…as I try to here at KSE. In the immortal words of Neil Young, it’s better to burn out than it is to rust.

2009 will also bring new solo chapbooks from Doug Draime, Michael Layne Heath, Zachary C. Bush, Brad Kohler, John Sweet, Ronald Baatz,  and others. AND I’ve approached five or six poets new-to-KSE about doing solo and collaborative works in the first half of 2009, but I can’t mention those yet as they are still in-discussion. Rest assured, however, that we are moving into some new territory in 2009 and we look forward to continuing to bring you at low cost and in small serving size the best of contemporary poetry. Poetry is meant to be savored, and in an our 8-to-10 page chapbooks, we have distilled only the purest from only the best and the most real  working poets from the US, Europe, and elsewhere.

Thanks to YOU for reading this and for your support of independent alternative publishing and poetry. Remember, KSE chapbooks are only 3-for $10 postpaid in the US and only $5 each postpaid outside the US. And with the dollar in the toilet internationally, I’m told that $5 just about buys a cup of coffee in Europe now, so make the coffee at home and send that $5 for a copy of NEXT EXIT: NINE or BEYOND THE BLUE ROCKS. Ordering information can be found to your upper right on the AVAILABLE KSE POETRY CHAPBOOKS page.

Have a great rest of the weekend.  Best wishes and positive vibrations from South Texas!

Scot Young reviews Chavez/Sweet “Next Exit: Nine” (KSE #112)

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Released a week ago, NEXT EXIT: NINE is already getting reviews (and great reader feedback!!!). Here’s a nice piece from poet Scot Young’s “Midwest Poet” blog:


Review of Next Exit: Nine by  MK Chavez and John Sweet
By Scot Young

As much as I like the work of MK Chavez and John Sweet I dislike collaborations even more.  As a child   my  report cards were always checked—does not play well with others—the handwriting has always been on the wall.  I have never been a fan of sharing.  In grad school  I preferred the solo act too and resisted the cohort thing.  As an adult and still carrying this trait, I could not see how publishing a collaborative chap could work. I believe art is solitary, that the creative process works better alone–in isolation.  I mean really, how can it gel?  And what is the point?  Give me a bottle of Two Buck Chuck’s and close the door.  So when I closed the door I found this.

Next  Exit: Nine is the latest chap book by MK Chavez and John Sweet.  It is a look at America from two poets–Sweet in New York and Chavez in California. As depicted on the cover, it is a look through an ornate gate at an open dumpster.  This collection takes you on a road trip from San Quentin to a roadside café in Nevada to a gas station in New York.

From springs, new york:

and we are tenderly blessed
for the sins we have
yet to commit,
and we have nothing to
break but promises

It is a collaborative trip to the land of melancholy, sadness and pain.  It is documentation of place, of America written uniquely enough in one voice from these two exceptional poets.

From point san quentin, california:

but we don’t cry and for different reasons. he can’t
be seen to have the weakness
of a woman. and I don’t cry
because it’s dangerous to be
a woman. in this foreign land
we call home, a teardrop
gets tattooed at the corner
of your eye to let the world
know that you don’t
have to go far to fight a war

This limited run of the Next Exit chap books always sells out fast.  This one with the combination of these two fabulous poets won’t last long either. At $4.00 postage paid it is a given.  And oh yeah, if you look real close in the dumpster on the cover, that is me sitting by myself in the corner eating a bit of crow and reading Next Exit: Nine.


Please go to , where the piece appears in its original context alongside many interesting poems, articles, reviews, and announcements. Mr. Young has an excellent blog, and there’s a good sampling of his poetry available there too…

October 24, 2008

5 more KSE chaps now sold out

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 8:36 pm

The following KSE poetry chapbooks are now sold out and no longer available:

#104, RICHARD WINK, all along the wensum;

#103, LUIS CUAUHTEMOC BERRIOZABAL, garden of rocks;

#101, BILL SHUTE, face to face (sound library series, volume 34);

#99,  ALEATHIA DREHMER, thickets of mayapple: letters for edward;

#95,  BILL SHUTE, quartet: improvisations on the mandukya upanishad.

Thanks to our regular readers and to newly acquired friends for your support!!!

October 20, 2008

KSE #110, IN GAMBLER’S BLOOD, discussed at Orange Alert

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Thanks to Jason at What To Wear During An Orange Alert for this write-up on Christopher Cunningham’s exciting new KSE chapbook, IN GAMBLER’S BLOOD (KSE #110). And each copy includes an different original watercolor by the poet! See “available KSE poetry chapbooks” page to your right for ordering info. Here’s the link to the piece: .  Or read it here, then click over to OA:


Christopher Cunningham In Gambler’s Blood (Kendra Steiner Editions #110, Sept. 2008)“The air is heavy with rent money and pain.”


I’ve never been much of a gambler in life or at the tables. In fact, I’ve only been to the casino once and it was rather a sad scene. Mostly elderly folks parked in front of video games blowing what’s left of their pensions and social security checks. They are hopeful but lost with no other place to go. I left feeling empty and $20 lighter, and I knew I would never return. Then I saw the movie 21, which is as much about gambling as it is about living, and became intrigued. It’s about systems and risks, and pushing yourself and the rules in place to their furthest limits. I wasn’t inspired to gamble in Casino’s, but I was moved to take more risks and take a few leaps.

In Christopher Cunningham’s latest chapbook, he finds inspiration in not just the blood of a gambler, but in the sound of the great spaghetti western composer Ennio Morricone. He brings to life the felt and plastic, the adrenaline and compulsion, the thrill of sadness, and the knowledge that you will never win. There is an ever-present feeling that you should be somewhere else, that you should be home.

Not only is In Gambler’s Blood a wonderful collection of poetry, but included in each book is an original watercolor hand painted and signed. There were only 60 copies printed of this collection and I am holding copy #29, so order yours today.


And when ordering Mr. Cunningham’s IN GAMBLER’S BLOOD, why not take advantage of our 3-for-$10 postpaid deal for US customers. Choose any two other books from among the following:

#113, A. J. KAUFMANN / BILL SHUTE, beyond the blue rocks: meditations on the Tibetan Book of the Dead  ;

#112, MK CHAVEZ / JOHN SWEET, next exit: nine ;

#111, A. J. KAUFMANN, poznan city gospel ;

#110, CHRISTOPHER CUNNINGHAM, in gambler’s blood (sound library series, volume 36) ;

#107, DOUG DRAIME, bones ;

#106, A. J. KAUFMANN, east-west train (sound library series, volume 35) ;

#105, RONALD BAATZ / BILL SHUTE, the companionship of the plum;


#34  STUART CRUTCHFIELD, shack simple (reprint).

Some of the lower-numbered books will be sold out and deleted from the catalogue within a few weeks, so act now. Congrats to CC for delivering an awesome and unique suite of poems that’s different from anything anyone else is doing and should stop most readers in their tracks…

October 19, 2008

new poetry from Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal at Ya’Sou!

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3 new poems—-“In Solitude At Night,”  “What Night Brings,” and “The Sound of Rain”—-from Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal in the online literary ‘zine YA’SOU!

Luis’s two most recent KSE chaps are still available:

#100, NEXT EXIT: SEVEN (with Ronald Baatz)

and #103, GARDEN OF ROCKS.

A new collection from Luis will be issued by KSE in December 2008: KSE #118, STILL HUMAN.

Congrats to LCB on this publication…and he’s with some distinguished company in this ‘zine. Check out the rest of the issue also…

October 17, 2008

MK Chavez/John Sweet, “Next Exit: Nine” (KSE #112), now available

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:26 pm


MK Chavez & John Sweet

The ninth and second-to-last installment in Kendra Steiner Editions’ “Next Exit” series of chapbooks—-a series devoted to poems rooted in a strong sense of place—- is now available. MK Chavez (from Berkeley, California) and John Sweet (from New York state) are friends and also admirers of each other’s work, so pairing them for a joint chapbook seemed like a natural. MK and John write about beauty and pain in styles that are rich yet understated, jagged yet warm, and ultimately disquieting. The people whose lives they document in their work are human versions of the blades of grass that somehow manage to grow through the cracks in the asphalt. Travel the desert backroads where Gram Parsons spent his last hours; walk through a world of domestic violence and pickup truck gun racks; take a sobering trip to San Quentin; taste the stolen and desperate kisses; harvest the empty garden.
Eleven brand-new poems written specifically for this project from two of the most distinctive American poets—poems that perfectly capture 2008 America.

MK Chavez is the author of Virgin Eyes (Zeitgeist Press) and Visitation (Kendra Steiner Editions) and an active participant in the San Francisco/Bay Area poetry community. She is a poet greatly admired by her colleagues and has been a joy to work with on her two KSE projects. Visit MK at

John Sweet, author of the much-acclaimed Human Cathedrals (Ravenna Press), has been an important voice in the alternative poetry world for at least 15 years. His blog and more recently his myspace page have been offering powerful, expertly crafted new poetry on a regular basis. Recent collections of his work include False Hope, Between Truth and Mercy, and World Without Sound. John is a true artist, and it has been an honor to work with him on this project. Visit John at

Don’t miss this one, folks. These Next Exit chaps generally sell out in 8 weeks or so. $4 US/ $5 elsewhere (postpaid).
Ordering information can be found to your upper right, or at:

And while you are there, don’t forget our other recent releases:

KSE #113, A. J. KAUFMANN / BILL SHUTE, beyond the blue rocks: meditations on the tibetan book of the dead;

KSE #111, A. J. KAUFMANN, poznan city gospel;

KSE #110, CHRISTOPHER CUNNINGHAM, in gambler’s blood (each copy comes with a different original watercolor by the poet) ;

KSE # 107, DOUG DRAIME, bones;

KSE #105, RONALD BAATZ / BILL SHUTE, the companionship of the plum;

KSE #104, RICHARD WINK, all along the wensum;


next exit: eight;

KSE #99, ALEATHIA DREHMER, thickets of mayapple: letters for edward.

Thanks for your support of KSE and of the independent poetry community and its independent publishers.

October 12, 2008

KSE reviewed at LIT UP magazine (12 October 2008)

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Kendra Steiner Editions: A Sampler of Reviews by Aleathia Drehmer

KSE #82, “Keepers of Silence” by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal  (2007)

Luis’ poetry endeavor comes via a grassroots chap published by Kendra Steiner Editions. This little book of eight poems is dedicated to Luis Omar Salinas, a poet transplanted from Texas to California. These works lend the reader to believe that LCB is having a wonderful imagined relationship with Salinas as if he stood beside him, Luis to Luis. This is an intimate collection that looks into the admiration of one poet to another.

“Salinas and Lord Byron”

I imagine his mind
is reaching for a line
only he could write:

something melancholy,
with a hint of magic,
and unforgettable.

Central California
has felt his brush and heard
his song in the groves.

He has some Lord Byron
in his veins, but I’m sure
he has never been to England.

KSE #83, “Rimbaud in the City: 10 Snapshots” by Glenn W. Cooper  (2008)

Traditionally, I am not one to read a book of poems completely entrenched with one idea or about a person as it leaves me cold most times, but Glenn W. Cooper captured my interest in this glancing of Rimbaud. He entertains what it might be like if Rimbaud were alive today, in this time. It impressed upon me that Cooper would have to transcend Rimbaud in an internal way to imagine him now. Each snapshot had me turning the page to the next one in anticipation to see where he would go next.

“Rimbaud picks up”

a hitchhiker on
highway 61 but
he’s not sure why
he’s not one for
small talk & doesn’t
need any company
for where he’s
going & they both
just sit there
with the radio
between them fading
in and out of blues
stations & no one
saying anything
there is nothing
to say or do
except listen to
Leadbelly & watch
the red dust swirling
in the cloudless
sky above them like
blood on a blue
blanket & suddenly
Rimbaud remembers why
he picked up the hiker
in the first place.

KSE #84, “Pulses of Time (creel pone sound study #7) by Bill Shute  (2008)

Bill Shute captures me now and again with his sound study series. This one in particular dazzled me with its word formations on the page, but more so than that was the regression of the book. It is a journey backwards from twelve hours to five minutes. Each block of time feels related yet not entirely connected. It gives the reader the opportunity to imagine what has happened in the hours not mentioned, trying to make that ephemeral linking of time.

“Eight Hours Ago”
dampened yet sizzling
electric blue icicles
at eye level

rock salt
and sand
at our feet
the vacuum
of chill and drone
and melting strings
and empty stockings
and tomorrow

Kendra Steiner Editions

Chapbooks are $4 each or 3 for $10 available while quantities last.


Thanks to Aleathia and to Lit Up!

(note: all three of the above books are out of print)


Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 10:57 am

KSE #113


This may well be the last poetry A. J. Kaufmann worked on in Poland before his recent move to Berlin. In fact, we did the final pre-publication edit with A.J. checking in from various Berlin internet cafes and bars. We spent about 3 months on this, and we’re both quite proud of it. A sequence of 10 poems, investigating themes and extending imagery found in the Tibetan Book of the Dead.

While there are an infinite number of ways for poets to work with spiritual themes, two that I’ve always found fruitful are that found in the Prophetic Books of William Blake where language is stretched and bent and charged and over-loaded to make it express, or at least echo, the inexpressible; and at the other end of the spectrum, that found in the work of the American colonial poet Edward Taylor, where plain, everyday images are used metaphorically to evoke spiritual truths, also making the point that “everything that is, is holy.” A. J. and I decided to mix those two approaches in this piece, also throwing in a bit of the incantatory Ginsberg-esque dynamism, and some Frank Samperi/Philip Whalen-esque close, minimal observation. The end result is BEYOND THE BLUE ROCKS: MEDITATIONS ON THE TIBETAN BOOK OF THE DEAD.

Beyond chance, beyond ego. Beyond the blue rocks.

See “available KSE chapbooks” page to your upper right for ordering information.

My next project is also a collaboration, this time with my old pal Zachary C. Bush, relocated to NY/NJ from Georgia and thriving there both personally and artistically. I expect that book, SHANTI, to be ready in December.

A. J. and I are talking about a blues-based collaborative project for early next year—-we’ll see how that develops. Until then, try BEYOND THE BLUE ROCKS, a juxtaposition of different voices, different styles, different angles of vision, different roads leading to the same horizon.

October 11, 2008

finishing out 2008—-then on to 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:52 pm

The schedule for the rest of 2008 is now set:


#114,  JIM D. DEUCHARS, allegheny rising 



#115,  various artists , “KSE LAST POEMS” collection ;

#116,  MISTI RAINWATER-LITES, next exit: ten



#117,  ZACHARY C. BUSH / BILL SHUTE, shanti (creel pone sound study #10 ) ;




#119,  A. J. KAUFMANN, satori in berlin (x-berg songs)


When Kendra was back in town a few weekends ago, we made some decisions about our plans for 2009. More will follow about that later (we’ve got much of the first half of 2009 in place already),  but the biggest change is that we’ve decided to scrap the KSE POETRY YEAR project. 2009 will be our 4th calendar year of operation, and while we’ll probably issue fewer chaps in 2009 than we did in 2008, we’re going to both fine-tune what we already do well and also head into some uncharted waters. Please join us for what promises to be our best year yet…and don’t forget the remaining three months of this year!

October 9, 2008

free KSE refrigerator magnet w/ purchase (while they last)

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While a number of people collect KSE chapbooks and I’m told some also collect the monthly update promo-cards with listings of the most recent books, here’s the first in what I hope will be a series of KSE swag items for loyal customers to collect: The Kendra Steiner Editions Refrigerator Magnet. Cheaply made but (perhaps) strong enough to hold up your grocery list or doctor’s appointment card. With attractive logo, our corporate motto, address, website URL, and e-mail address, you can’t live without it. Free with any paid order.

October 4, 2008

11,000+ visitors

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Just reached the 11,000 visitor mark a few days ago (or, at least, visits from 11,000 different computers). Thanks to all for visiting.

Krishnamurti: “The Real Revolution” (1966 NET broadcast)

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Part 1:

Part 2:

Blog at