Monday, October 27, 2008

The Alps

by Brandon Shimoda

ISBN 978-0-9790888-2-7
144 pages, 7x9
$14 (+ $2 shipping & handling)


Send a check for $16 to:

Flim Forum Press
PO Box 549
Slingerlands, NY 12159

Query: klane at flimforum dot com


"Part elegy, part celebration, Brandon Shimoda’s debut interweaves glimpses of individual lives, fragments of revolution and war, and a bird’s-eye view of the waxing and waning of generations in mapping profound issues of identity and history. Viewed through the lens of his particular family history, Shimoda stations The Alps in an eerily beautiful yet threatening landscape, one entangled, inextricably, with the brutality of human existence. By turns playful, detached, and deeply emotional, the myriad voices of The Alps resonate with a spare and violent beauty."

—Laura Sims

"There are the Alps, standing impossibly high and shining like pieces of the Moon grafted onto Earth. They pour their substance down into the valleys, rewriting the human landscape with passages of ice. The words of Brandon Shimoda’s The Alps also seem to arrive in this way, transfixed by cold cascades of glacial time. Human narratives embedded here are carried great distances across the white space of the page. And while Shimoda’s poetic glaciers may have the power to grind words themselves to rubble, they also serve as windows (symbolized by the empty frames of one section) into a meaning beyond words. Here, frozen records of the past––personal memories, along with the traces of ancestors both literary and familial––are fractured and reassembled according to an ‘unknown intermixture of laws’ (in the words of the British physicist Tyndall, describing glacial structure). Shimoda (citing Tyndall) looks toward the ‘order and beauty’ hidden behind the ‘utter confusion’ of the Real."

—Andrew Joron

"Brandon Shimoda’s The Alps is an exploration across modes of perception and through them, primarily the visual and the intuitive, which encompasses the feeling-out of experience (whether one’s own or others’) as memory, invention, collage, bricolage. A formally interdisciplinary text, The Alps expands the borders around forms of identity and, in one section, confronts the breakdown of language as the medium constitutive of identity.

Shimoda’s is a welcome voice among a new generation, one saturated by images and so compelled, at times, to creatively, renewingly engage and remake them."

—Lisa Fishman

"A scattering, a drowning, a droning, a hoofing; a bombing, a sinking, a plugging, a mapping; a feasting, a birthing, a stitching, a sewing, The Alps is an avalanche inventory ceremony. Part Maximus, part Cremaster, The Alps proceeds across a 'cropping continent"' variously sounding, muffling, digesting, and smoking out histories and voices 'eroding nation-blankness sort of.' If it is true that '[…] there is/no witness//to vanquish/language from the books you know,' The Alps, in its omnivorous, flesh-eating pursuit, invites us at least to banquet with it, to be among the 'self-fertilized/guests, among ghosts' in its vast and nomadic recalibrations performs a dazzling new archeology."

—Anthony Hawley

Sunday, October 26, 2008

hodge-podge pre-alps party

much hath o-ccured that's Flim-tinted:

boog city in nyc: th'flim forum table was flanked by jessica smith's outside voices and fence books (w/ editor colie collen + poet ariana reines). many flim poets attended, all of them good-looking: jaye bartell (w/ new book Ever After Never Under), eric gelsinger, jessica smith, adam golaski, + jeff paris. this was ashley spears' first small press fair, + tho the room smelled like a hotel swimming pool + sucked light like a black hole, she had a marvelous time. as editor golaski's new intern, she is one of the lucky few to've read The Alps in ms. form. she loved it.

four weeks later, flim forum headed to lowell, mass, for lowell's first annual small press book fair. we waved to colie while we sold copies of oh one arrow + a sing economy, and while we promoted the alps w/ a gorgeous postcard (see previous post for art). the weather was spectacular. baby elizabeth and mom amy enjoyed the trolly. we'll be back next year, and hope to set up a reading. for The Alps. did I say "The Alps"?


adam golaski's first book, a collection of weird stories called Worse Than Myself, was published in July, just in time for baby elizabeth's birthday. she has not read the book, but thinks adam is awesome. more information can be found at the raw dog screaming press website. if you like experimental poetry but wish it was scarier, this book is for you.

flim poets adam golaski + john cotter read ghost stories at symposium books in providence, rhode island, where a lovely oh one arrow reading was held in early '07. edward bell, the store owner, is a beloved supporter. flim poet kate shapira, oh one arrow designer jeremy withers, + golaski-intern ashley spears were in attendance. kate invited adam to read in her series at ada books in providence on nov. 8th. he accepted.

katie kemple, flim poet (remember how much you loved the plant poems in oh one arrow?), has a poem in foursquare vol. 2 no. 11. it's one of her "pregnancy sonnets" and is not to be missed.

next post: The Alps. dig it.