Kendra Steiner Editions (Bill Shute)

November 25, 2017

6th in the series of Natchez poems, SATORI IN NATCHEZ, from Bill Shute (KSE # 391)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 11:08 am

the sixth release from the recent poems written in Natchez, Mississippi


(KSE #391, poetry chapbook)

edition of 41 hand-cut, hand-assembled copies

$6 US postpaid / $7 elsewhere postpaid

payment via paypal  to     django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

please leave note with your order letting me know which items you are ordering and your mailing address…..thanks!


“the dropping of a handkerchief can be for

the poet the lever with which we will

lift the universe”–  Frank O’Hara


I composed SEVEN six-page poems during my two weeks in Natchez, Mississippi, in May 2017, and here is the sixth one to be edited and formatted: SATORI IN NATCHEZ. The final one will come out in December, and I also hope to record all seven in the coming months for 2018 release. As usual, it’s open-field poems filtered through the consciousness of a narrative persona who is up to his waist in the muck, but looking toward the horizon (I’d say stars, but these were written during the daytime)—-JUNK SCULPTURE FROM THE NEW GILDED AGE.

As I read these pages aloud to Mary Anne after not having looked at the pieces for months, I was reminded how deeply the red wheelbarrows and petals on a wet black bough of my teenage poetry studies took root, then the initial shrubbery later trimmed and pruned through my study of Charles Reznikoff and Lorine Niedecker….but I’m not the kind of person who thinks of influence very often. One learns one’s craft in adolescence and then learns how to apply and develop—-and, we hope, go beyond—-the influences during one’s apprentice years. After that, we have the tools to add whatever life throws our way into our poetic stew and to make it work and make it distinctive and make it seductively tasty in such a way that others will want to consume it….and then want to come back for next week’s variation.

Also, in terms of poetry serving as a core sample of life as it is lived circa 2017, if we want to better understand and to document this age, we need to taste the soil and walk the walk in places such as Natchez, Mississippi. There is a lot to experience, a lot to learn…and a lot to savor. The voices past and present are calling out….

Crew members took the flowers from the tables before the banquet ended….piquant piccadilly sunshine cuts through the layers of kudzu and the residue of habit….standing water from yesterday evening’s showers, widening the cracks in the cream-stained wood, washing the grime from our feet, mis-shapen from the miles marched in steel-toed boots….two black horses pulled the carriage with the coffin through a swarm of beret-wearing beatnik flies, acting as if they were still in Brooklyn…intoning the sutras of the swamp, lined-out by mud, punctuated by mosquitoes, indentured to the payday-loan store & pretending to look alive…..I’m not able to change my gait, but I can adapt it to the needs at hand….

These seven pieces written in Natchez will eventually be collected in a full-sized professionally printed book, but as always, the home-made KSE chapbook publication is the only publication in the original formatting, with the original art, with the original epigraph (this time from Frank O’Hara, see top of post), and in the intended form of its creation. There are only 41 copies….grab one now, while you can.

Each of these chapbooks is a stand-alone piece (the “serial poem” concept of Jack Spicer seems to fit my work well), so don’t worry about what order they are in. I consider each narrator to be a unique person telling his/her unique story from his/her unique perspective. I as poet am just the actor playing the part, the gallery-operator assembling the exhibition.

I hope you find SATORI IN NATCHEZ interesting and worthwhile. Thanks for your reading all these years!

Also available, for the same price:

($6 US ppd/$7 elsewhere ppd)

KSE #382 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “The Difficulties, The Impossibilities,” 5th of the Natchez poems

KSE #380 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Time Crystals,” 4th of the Natchez poems

KSE #378 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Meltdown,” 3rd of the Natchez poems

KSE #376 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “New Jerusalem,”  2nd of the Natchez poems

KSE #374 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Guest Register,” 1st of the Natchez poems

and not part of the Natchez sequence, but written after those, while in New Mexico and El Paso

KSE #386 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Trimmings”…..

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