Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Trail building photos

Here's some photos from the Ice Age Trail Mobile Skills Crew weekend (Aug. 18-21, 2005) near the Merrimac Ferry.

Chris Arbizzani, the guy who sent me these pictures, proudly wields a red cedar stump. Good job, Chris!

John and Greg take a break.

A local with a chainsaw tackles one of the hundreds of invasive red cedars that grow near the trail. The air was filled with a cedary scent that reminded me of my mother's hope chest.

Here's one of the newest "awesome" views from the Ice Age Trail, looking out over Lake Wisconsin.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Lenticular clouds

Last week I got two e-mails with photos from hiker friends who had hiked near Mt. Rainier in Washington. Carla H. hiked a segment of the Wonderland Trail, a 100-mile trail that goes around the base of the mountain. In July Skip D. attempted a trip to the summit that had to be aborted due to bad weather. But in Skip's e-mail he had a picture of lenticular clouds. I knew what they were by sight and even have a few photos of them from my Pacific Crest Trail hike last year, but didn't until now know what they were called. Then I brainstormed to figure out where I'd heard that term before. Ah hah. It was in some book my friend Shawn R. loaned me about UFOs and how lenticular clouds are often mistaken to be flying saucers.

len·tic·u·lar (l?n-t?k'y?-l?r) pronunciation
  1. Shaped like a biconvex lens.
  2. Of or relating to a lens.

[Latin lenticul?ris, lentil-shaped, from lenticula, lentil. See lentil.]

Where stable moist air flows over a mountain or a range of mountains, a series of large-scale standing waves may form on the downwind side. Lenticular clouds sometimes form at the crests of these waves.

Power pilots tend to avoid flying near lenticular clouds because of the turbulence of the rotor systems that accompany them, but sailplane pilots actively seek them out. This is because the systems of atmospheric standing waves that cause "lennies" (as they are sometimes familiarly called) also involve large vertical air movements, and the precise location of the rising air mass is fairly easy to predict from the orientation of the clouds. "Wave lift" of this kind is often very smooth and strong, and enables gliders to soar to remarkable altitudes. The current gliding world records for both distance and altitude were set using such lift.

Because these clouds have a characteristic lens appearance, or smooth saucer-like shape, they have been mistaken for UFOs (or "visual cover" for UFOs).

In the USA, lenticular clouds are relatively rare, but have been observed over the White Mountains of New Hampshire, over Mount Rainier, Washington, in the Rockies, and less often in Hawaii.

Friday, August 26, 2005

On Skepticism

For my summer course, English 501, literary research and bibliography, Dr. Baker wrote one word on the board, Skepticism (British spelling, of course) and said that was the theme of the course. Its taken me until now to look into the root of the word.


skep·ti·cism also scep·ti·cism 'Audio ( P ) Pronunciation Key (skpt-szm)

  1. A doubting or questioning attitude or state of mind; dubiety. See Synonyms at uncertainty.
  2. Philosophy.
    1. The ancient school of Pyrrho of Elis that stressed the uncertainty of our beliefs in order to oppose dogmatism.
    2. The doctrine that absolute knowledge is impossible, either in a particular domain or in general.
    3. A methodology based on an assumption of doubt with the aim of acquiring approximate or relative certainty.
  3. Doubt or disbelief of religious tenets.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Pyrrho (c360 BC - c270 BC), a Greek philosopher from Elis, is usually credited as being the first skeptic philosopher and is the founder of the school known as Pyrrhonism. Diogenes Laertius, quoting from Apollodorus, says that he was at first a painter, and that pictures by him were in existence in the gymnasium at Elis. Later he was diverted to philosophy by the works of Democritus, and became acquainted with the Megarian dialectic through Bryson, pupil of Stilpo.

Pyrrho, along with Anaxarchus, travelled with Alexander the Great on his exploration of the east, and studied in India under the Gymnosophists and under the Magi in Persia. From the Oriental philosophy he seems to have adopted a life of solitude. Returning to Elis, he lived in poor circumstances, but was highly honoured by the Elians and also by the Athenians, who gave him the rights of citizenship. His doctrines are known mainly through the satiric writings of his pupil Timon of Phlius (the Sillographer). The main principle of his thought is expressed in the word acatalepsia, which implies the impossibility of knowing things in their own nature. Against every statement the contradictory may be advanced with equal reason. Secondly, it is necessary in view of this fact to preserve an attitude of intellectual suspense, or, as Timon expressed it, no assertion can be known to be better than another. Thirdly, these results are applied to life in general. Pyrrho concludes that, since nothing can be known, the only proper attitude is ataraxia, "freedom from worry".

The impossibility of knowledge, even in regard to our own ignorance or doubt, should induce the wise man to withdraw into himself, avoiding the stress and emotion which belong to the contest of vain imaginings. This drastic skepticism is the first and the most thorough exposition of agnosticism in the history of thought. Its ethical results may be compared with the ideal tranquillity of the Stoics and the Epicureans.The proper course of the sage, said Pyrrho, is to ask himself three questions. Firstly we must ask what things are and how they are constituted. Secondly, we ask how we are related to these things. Thirdly, we ask what ought to be our attitude towards them. As to what things are, we can only answer that we know nothing. We only know how things appear to us, but of their inner substance we are ignorant. The same thing appears differently to different people, and therefore it is impossible to know which opinion is right. The diversity of opinion among the wise, as well as among the vulgar, proves this. To every assertion the contradictory assertion can be opposed with equally good grounds, and whatever my opinion, the contrary opinion is believed by somebody else who is quite as clever and competent to judge as I am. Opinion we may have, but certainty and knowledge are impossible. Hence our attitude to things (the third question), ought to be complete suspense of judgment. We can be certain of nothing, not even of the most trivial assertions.

This article incorporates text from the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, which is in the public domain.

The most important evidence on Pyrrho's views is found in the following fragment of Aristocles, a Peripatetic of uncertain date (perhaps 1st c. B.C.-A.D., perhaps 2nd c. A.D.).

He [Pyrrho] himself has left nothing in writing, but this pupil Timon says that whoever wants to be happy must consider these three questions: first, how are things by nature? Secondly, what attitude should we adopt towards them? Thirdly, what will be the outcome for those who have such an attitude? According to Timon, Pyrrho declared that things are equally indifferent, unmeasurable and inarbitrable. For this reason neither our sensations nor our opinions tell us truths or falsehoods. Therefore for this reason we should not put our trust in them one bit, but should be unopinionated, uncommitted and unwavering, saying concerning each individual thing that it no more is than is not, or both is and is not, or neither is nor is not. The outcome for those who actually adopt this attitude, says Timon, will be first speechlessness [aphasia], and then freedom from disturbance; and Aenesidemus says pleasure. (Eusebius, Prep. Ev. 14.18.2-5, Long & Sedley)

NOTE: Pyrrho must not be confused with Pyrrhus, that crazy elephant-charging Greek general from which we get the word Pyrrhic (meaning: victory at great cost).

I see now, after looking into the meaning of skepticism, why it is such an appropriate word for someone involved in bibliographical research. As any student of bibliography knows, it is impossible to cite every extant source on a person or subject. Sources of knowledge are ever elusive. But can one find contentment in doubt of their own senses? Pyrrho seemed to think so. But that seems to be a question that dogs philosophers, bibliographers and theologians since antiquity. We could use a little more skepticism in these dogmatic, technocratic, fundamentalistic times. Or could we?

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I'm a Guayabera kinda guy

A few weeks ago Esther and I went to a vintage clothing/ thrift shop, Moxie!, in downtown DeKalb, where I found this cool shirt with all these pockets and buttons and funky embroidered patterns on the front and back. I thought I had the coolest, funkiest, most unique shirt in the world!

Then, a couple weekends ago we visited Esther's Aunt Vicky and Uncle Ger. Sunday morning Ger comes down wearing the exact same style of shirt. He told me it is a Guayabera shirt, and is worn at special ceremonies in Belize. I've done some Net research and discovered that this shirt is popular not only in Belize, but the rest of South America.

Check out this link for a short history of the shirt. According to this site, Ernest Hemingway wore this style of shirt when he lived in Cuba. Here's another link to a short Wikipedia article about the Guayabera. Both articles agree that the shirt's origin in the west can be traced to Cuba.

Paper wins!!

In the first of my weekly polls, nine people voted, and paper won in a landslide, 6-3. Now, come on people. It only takes a second. Vote in the handy dandy Greg Locascio side bar poll. Vote as often as you like!!! Here are the comments from the last poll.

can always use paper as backup TP
08/23/05 6:11:16 PM MST
I hope you're referring to grocery bags. Also, another poll might be: Bags or sacks? Here in Wisconsin we have baggers at the grocery store to load our groceries. In Iowa they are called sackers.
08/19/05 5:44:20 PM MST
plastic is long chains of molocules that never break down no matter what you do to them while paper you can use to poilish you windows and mirrors and the light you fire etc.
08/19/05 1:29:13 PM MST
Plastics get recycled as trash can liners. Paper builds up between the fridge and the wall, in several drawers and in a stack in the back hall.
08/19/05 11:19:34 AM MST

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Dead white guy II

I made a mistake in my mass e-mail announcement. I referred to former vice president Spiro Agnew as a "former presidential candidate." In fact, he was a vice-presidential candidate and ran successfully with Richard Nixon on the 1968 and 72 tickets. Here's an excerpt from about the origin of the "nattering nabobs" line:

"'Nattering nabobs of negativism' is one of the most popular turns of phrase associated with U.S. Vice President Spiro T. Agnew, who served under Richard Nixon until resigning in October 1974, after pleading no contest to charges of tax fraud. Agnew, who had a particularly acrimonious relationship with the press, used this term to refer to the members of the media, whom he also deemed "an effete corps of impudent snobs."
According to the Congressional Record, this term was first used during Agnew's address to the California Republican state convention in San Diego on September 11, 1970. In context, it was used together with another well-known Agnew alliteration: "In the United States today, we have more than our share of the nattering nabobs of negativism. They have formed their own 4-H Club -- the "hopeless, hysterical hypochondriacs of history."
Although this phrase is often credited to Agnew himself, it was actually written by William Safire, the legendary columnist for The New York Times, who was a speechwriter for Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew. Some of Agnew's other pearls were actually written by Patrick Buchanan, another White House speechwriter at the time. "

Thanks to my uncle Jack for correcting my earlier assertion. I'd assumed Agnew ran for President in the primaries and was chosen from the pool of losers. Actually, Agnew was Governor of Maryland when Nixon asked him to run as VP in 1968. Agnew resigned from office in 1974, pleading no-contest to tax fraud, and died in 1996.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Moog is dead; long live the Moog

Robert Moog (pr: vogue) died Sunday at age 71. I've never played a Minimoog, the popular keyboard instrument he invented, but I'd like to mess around with one. The Minimoog synthesizer was first popularized in the mid-60s through the Grammy-winning record "Switched on Bach," by Walter Carlos (now Wendy Carlos after a sex-change operation) and has been heard on many rock records since, including the Beatles' "Abbey Road."

My favorite Moog moment is the last few seconds of Emerson, Lake and Palmer's epic rock opus "Karn Evil 9" as a basic melody repeats, increasing in speed until it whirls into oblivion. Here is an obituary on Moog.

The best Moog site I discovered is . This site traces Bob Moog's love of the Theremin, a musical instrument played by waving your hands in front of a metal wand (yes, an instrument where you don't touch anything), and how that led to the development of the Minimoog. There's even a film documentary, Moog, released last year.

I have a tape from BBC Radio floating around somewhere, an audio documentary by Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman about the Moog. Wakeman's program didn't focus on Robert Moog or his inventions, but rather gives an audio tour of the Minimoog, an amazing instrument that gives unprecedented control over the sound of the instrument.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Skillin' it near Lodi, WI

This past weekend was spent on the trail, in particular a new mile of Ice Age Trail leading south from the Merrimac Ferry . The Ice Age Park and Trail Foundation hosts the Mobile Skills Crew , a volunteer trail building corps that Esther and I have been involved with since its inception in 2002. The Crew hosts seven trail building weekends a year, once a month April through October (the April session incorporates crew training into the trail building).

We had our biggest one day turnout ever Saturday as more than 75 volunteers helped on what is called the "Colsac" project, so named after the ferry boat that crosses Lake Wisconsin between Columbia and Sauk counties. We established tread along Hwy. 113 to a hill that overlooks Lake Wisconsin. The trail climbs up to a beautiful grassy overlook onto the lake. The hill was choked with red cedars and a few stately oak trees. Many of the cedars were cut down and the younger volunteers helped haul branches into a big pile. Soon, the Lodi Valley Chapter of the Ice Age Trail will use a wood chipper to make cedar ships to sell as a fundraising effort.

An old college friend of mine, Chris A., joined us and, even though he complained of soreness and fatigue after spending hours swinging a pick mattock, he agreed that seeing a completed trail gave him a real sense of accomplishment. We also took a picture of him heaving his first stump. Pregnant Esther walked up and down the hill providing tools and snacks for the workers. Sunday morning she took it a little easier and posted yellow blaze trail markers to guide hikers along the new route.

Anyone interested in volunteering for future Mobile Skills Crew projects should contact the Ice Age Trail at or call 800-227-0046.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

La Petomane (the fartiste)

Culling through the archives of I uncovered an article about Joseph Pujol, a.k.a. La Petomane, a French vaudevillian whose claim to fame was a remarkable ability to control his flatulence. Here's a link to the article.

Diego to Fuego!

I recently sent out a mass e-mail announcing the creation of this blog to everyone in my address book. Many of the people in the e-mails I had not contacted in years, and it was a real pleasure to get feedback from some long-lost souls, including a friend we met on the Appalachian Trail, Cheri (Hacker) Harris. Hacker was her trail name then. Her reply came from somewhere in Central America because she and her husband, Dylan, are on a year-long bike trip travelling from San Diego to Tierra Del Fuego, the southernmost tip of South America. Check out their adventures at . So many of the friends we made on the AT in 2000 continue to have adventurous lives. That is one of the many gifts of the trail life. Buen viaje, Hacker and Dylan!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Dog Team

Teddy Keizer called me last night. Who? Keizer is a total stranger, some guy from Portland, OR, whom I've never met. He got my name and phone number through some labyrinthine network of connections relating to the Ice Age Trail.
Keizer called me about a month ago wanting to know about "the best 30-mile sections of trail" in Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. He said he plans to hike 30-mile sections of trail in all 50 states in honor of Bob Marshall, ecologist, forester and founder of the Wilderness Society. He starts in September and plans to complete the feat in 76 days.
I told him the only 30-mile hiking trail option in Illinois is the River to River trail and the best trail in Minnesota is the Superior Hiking Trail (ranked the second best long-distance trail in the U.S. in a Backpacker magazine survey; first place went to the Wonderland Trail). I debated at length about the best 30-mile segment of trail in Wisconsin because, thanks to my volunteer involvement with the Ice Age Trail, I have seen many quality segments. There is also a noteworthy section of the North Country Trail in Wisconsin that I've read about (and even have the maps for), but have yet to hike.

Keizer said he chose, upon my suggestion, a section of the Ice Age Trail in the Northern Kettle Moraine State Forest, and wanted information about maps. I agreed to copy and send him pages from the Ice Age Trail atlas, along with a description from the IAT Companion Guide. Keizer said he would chronicle his journey at and that I would be welcome to join him when he comes to Wisconsin. Portions of his journey are being filmed and will be in a three episode special on the Outdoor Life Network.

Our conversation was brief -- less than 10 minutes -- so I never got to ask him what trails he chose for Illinois and Minnesota. I'm also curious to know what 30-mile sections of trail he plans to hike in Delaware and Rhode Island.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Little Louie circa 10 weeks old

Little Louie is the name we have for our unborn child. We don't know if it's a boy or a girl and don't want to know until birth. The name comes from Esther's grandfather, Carl Larson, who named all his unborn grandchildren "Little Louie."

Cubs Win! Cubs Win! Cubs Win!

I went to my first Cubs game since June 2003 last night as the Cubs beat the Cardinals, 5-4. This was one of the best games I've seen at Wrigley Field. Mark Prior improved his record to 8-4 with six masterful innings of work. Cardinals catcher Mike Mahoney hit his first career home run in the second. Cubs center-fielder Corey Patterson gave the Cubs a 2-1 lead with a two-run homer in the third, his first since returning from a minor league assignment Aug. 9. Cubs left-fielder Matt Lawton hit a solo shot in the 5th inning. Cubs SS Nomar Garciaparra and 2B Todd Walker each got three hits, Kerry Wood and Prior both pitched in the same game for the first time ever, and the Cubs got two pinch hits, including a two-run single by Jose Macias in the bottom of the sixth inning that put the Cubs up for good, 5-3. Also, Cardinals pitcher Matt Morris got nailed by a line drive off the bat of Jeromy Burnitz, Garciaparra had a rare trhowing error and National League batting average leader Derrek Lee had a home run called back and ruled foul after he'd rounded the bases. Cubs closer Ryan Dempster had the Wrigley faithful wriggling in their seats as he typically had control problems and allowed a run in the ninth inning, bringing Albert Pujols, the Cardinals home run leader, to the plate representing the go-ahead run with the tying run at second base. Pujols grounded to second to end the game.
I sat in the upper deck right field side, about four rows up from the railing looking over the lower grandstand. Great seats! The sunset affected my view of the game for the first couple innings, but I enjoyed watching the Friendly Confines aglow in the gloaming. I sat with my father, Frank, wife Esther, brother Ken, his friend from France, Cyane, who had never seen a baseball game before, and his friend Tim. Some new things I noticed about Wrigley Field: The electronic ticker below the manual scoreboard is in color. Also, there are color announcement boards along the upper deck railings that announce the score, inning, at-bat, balls and strikes and, much to my interest, miles-per-hour of each pitch.
Still, the Cubs are four games below .500 at 57-61 and have what can only be called glimmering playoff hopes, despite taking 3-of-4 from the Cardinals over the weekend. Too bad they couldn't show such competitive fire during their 8-game losing streak. The last time I saw the Cubs play, June 26, 2003, Mark Prior struck out 16, but did not win as Cubs closer Joe Borowski gave up a three-run home run to Geoff Jenkins and the Milwaukee Brewers won, 5-3.

Friday, August 12, 2005


Today's post is about corn. Despite the drought, corn stands have sprouted up all over northern Illinois. I've tried corn on the east and west coasts. They don't hold a candle to the corn available here in the Midwest. Sweet corn comes in three varieties -- white, yellow and bi-color. The two dozen ears we've bought, from Kirkland and DeKalb respectively, have been bi-color. For the first time in over 10 years, I plan to attend the DeKalb Corn Fest, a music/arts and crafts festival downtown.
Which is better, boiled corn on the cob, off the cob, or, something I've seen in recent years, grilled corn on the cob, also called steamed corn because the husk is left on? Some people even eat it raw. I've tried it that way and it's not that bad. You can also bake it in the oven or be lazy and nuke it in the microwave. Bottom line -- corn is versatile, forgiving and easy to cook and enjoy. And right now is the best time to enjoy it.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Dishwasher Pete

I read an article about Dishwasher Pete (Jensen), an itinerant whose goal is to wash dishes in all 50 states. He was a regular on This American Life and once even fooled David Letterman by having somebody else stand in for him as a guest on Late Night. He has his own fan-zine called, appropriately enough, Dish-washer, but from what I can find on the web he hasn't published it in a while. If you want to take your chances, you can send a $1 to:

PO Box 8213
Portland, OR 97207
Here's a link to a letter Pete wrote to a dishwasher friend about working at a Portland restaurant.

There is, like everything else, whether it be backpacking or action-figure collecting, an entire subculture devoted to the lowly art of dishwashing. I wish I'd stumbled on these people long ago. I could have kept on dishwashing instead of going to college and all that other self-important crap. I did the math once and figured out I've probably worked as a dishwasher for three full-time years at four different jobs.

It all began with Friday nights at Sahara, a fish fry my mother ran successfully for over 20 years in the basement of a biker bar in Loves Park, IL. Many happy memories of scrubbing pots and pans in the wee hours while Harleys roared outside, heard through the whir of an exhaust fan. Then, after high school, I worked the summer of 1991 as a dishwasher for Canteen, where, again, my mother was my boss. This was my first exposure to a dishwashing machine, a Hobart, that was great at grinding up forks into creative origami shapes. In college I worked in the student cafeteria in Neptune Hall at NIU. The machine there filled up a room. Stuff that needed to be washed was fed on a conveyor belt. The soaps and rinse chemicals came in gallon jugs that had to be changed periodically. I worked there on and off from 1994-96.

My last dishwashing job was at Pizza Hut in DeKalb, IL, in the summer of 1996. I originally worked as a delivery driver until my car started acting up and the regular dishwasher quit. I lasted three months using this crappy dishwashing machine that could only hold one tray at a time and was only good for washing cups and silverware. Any bit of clinging residue successfully resisted this pitiful machine.

That was the last time I washed dishes professionally. Sometimes, like now, being unemployed, I romanticize about the easy life I had. And it is. Despite the grime, steam and general hard labor of the job, it is fairly simple and usually, unless you've got some hard-ass supervisor, can be accompanied by a radio. If I wasn't married, 32, in graduate school and about to be a father, I'd consider a career change.

Review of The House commodes

Esther and I hung out with George last night at The House, a cool music club/ coffee house in downtown DeKalb at the NW corner of Lincoln Highway and Third Street, or about a stone's throw from our apartment. We listened to the Fareed Haque trio, which plays every Wednesday and I thought would feature Haque. He was absent, but three unknown NIU music students, no doubt under Haque's tutelage, jammed out on upright bass, electric guitar and alto saxophone.

Esther went to the bathroom and came back with her rating. She gave it 5-stars, the highest rating, because the soap dispenser's an oil and vinegar flask, the kind you see paired together in a wire tray at the salad bar. She also gave kudos to the full-length mirror, the overall cleanliness and a subtle sweet scent emanating from a fragrance dispenser. I visited both men's bathrooms and gave each 3.5 stars. Yes, there are two bathrooms each for men and women, which suggests to me The House, in some past incarnation, was a clothing boutique. One had a collection of Tibetan mandala prints. Another had framed black and white photos of jazz greats, like Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Billie Holliday, all wreathed in smoke. The toilet flusher in both is a button in the center of the lid, and activated with torrential fury. That's a nice touch.

I've gone to some nice restaurants with great atmosphere, presentation, lighting and food, but the 'dining experience' was ruined by a nasty-ass bathroom. The House's commodes are, ahem, an asset to the establishment.

Friday, August 05, 2005

This is an 1839 map of the Rock River in Jefferson and Dodge Counties. Notice that Horicon Marsh was called Winnebago Marsh. A rich archive of photos and other miscellania can be found at this link.

The color, modern-looking photos are from a Rock River trip I took about four weeks ago. These pictures were taken on the east branch of the Rock River. The dam photo is around Theresa, WI. I have since gone back four times and am almost to Watertown, WI. I anticipate finishing the Rock River around the end of October. These are the only digital images I have because the day after these photos were taken I dunked my canoe in Horicon Marsh and got my camera wet. It hasn't been able to power up since.
These older photos I've gotten off the Internet. One is taken near Jefferson, WI, another off the Main Street bridge in Fort Atkinson. I anticipate arriving in these towns sometime before the end of the month. The other bridge shot is from Horicon, WI. I was just there about two weeks ago. The picture with "Watertown Historical Society" in the middle of it is from Mayville, WI, which is shortly after Theresa on the east branch. Click on this link for more classic pictures of the Rock River in Jefferson and Dodge Counties, Wisconsin.

I interviewed with the Rockford Register Star about three weeks ago and they never got back to me. Now I've only got about 17 days before the fall semester of classes resume and I want to find someone to publish my stories about this Rock River adventure. What do I love about being on the river? The river is the lowest place in the landscape, so while you often come to bridges, hear airplanes and get other reminders of civilization like tires, cars, furniture and rolled up carpet, most of the time spent on the water is at a bit of a remove from society. That is a very difficult thing to achieve in northern Illinois/southern Wisconsin. It is a physical and mental challenge to canoe the entire river. There is something about my nature that has to constantly be setting some long-distance travel goal, and for now the Rock and, subsequently, the Fox rivers are my latest goals.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Whew! I just finished my summer course in bibliography and literary research. I don't know what grade I got, but it's possible I got an 'A.' The Bukowski paper was given a B++ and I got A's in four out of seven other assignments. So I guess it depends in the whim of Dr. William Baker and the results of my take-home final. Today, yes, today, the day after my final class in a week full of flurry of scholarship, I took the Graduate Record Examination general text, and without any prior study I got a good enough score on the verbal skills portion to get into the graduate program at NIU. Funny thing is I guessed on more than half the quantitative (math) portion questions, but ended up with a higher score. This goes to show you that these tests do not accurately determine intelligence.

This picture describes how I felt after four hours of testing. Tomorrow I'm going to veg out, go on a hike and avoid the library at all costs. By the way, here's a picture of Founder's Memorial Library, where I've spent most of my summer hours.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Wolfgang Iser

Wolfgang Iser was born July 22, 1926, in Marienberg, Germany, the son of Paul and Else (Steinbach) Iser. He studied as an undergraduate at the University of Leipzig and the University of Tubingen, and earned his Ph.D. in 1950 from the University of Heidelberg. He went on to teach English literature at the Universities of Glasgow, Wurzburg and Cologne. In 1967 he became a professor of English and comparative literature at the newly founded University of Constance in Germany. Since the mid-1980s Iser has been a permanent visiting professor of English at the University of California at Irvine.
Iser is a leader of the "Constance School," which concerned itself with Rezeptionasthetik, "aesthetic of reception," or reader-response theory. Iser was interested in "the way in which texts are actively constructed by individual readers through the phenomenology of the reading process" (Norton 1671). According to Norton, Iser's two most influential works are The Implied Reader: Patterns of Communication in Prose Fiction from Bunyan to Beckett (1972; trans. 1974) and The Act of Reading: A Theory of Aesthetic Response (1976; trans. 1978). He first introduced the concept of reader response in Die Appellstruktur der Text (1970, The Affective Structure of Text). In Implied... Iser established that meaning of text is gained by an interaction between the text and the reader. "Neither text nor reader has autonomy: the text depends on the reader for its meaning to be realized, and the meaning produced by the reader is controlled by the text" (Wolfreys 284). Three elements are involved in the reading process: the text, the reader, and the context, meaning the socio-historical norms and assumptions taken into the reading.
In The Act of Reading... Iser introduces the notion of the virtual text, meaning "the text represents a potential effect that is realized in the reading process" (Norton 1671). Iser complements his "Constance School" contemporary and colleague Hans-Robert Jauss . Jauss aimed to develop a historical approach to literature and developed the concept of the "historical reader." Iser was more interested in the "implied reader." Robert Holub said Jauss was interested in the "macrocosm of reception," Iser with the "microcosm of response" (Wolfreys 284).
Search process
I started out my search with the Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism on the advice of a classmate, Amanda, who said she found a good entry on Iser when she took an undergraduate course in literary criticism. I then used ABELL (Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature), The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism, Contemporary Critical Theory: A Selected Bibliography and Research in Critical Theory Since 1965: A Classified Bibliography. All of these are recommended by Harner under the "Literary Criticism and Theory" heading (Harner numbers 6120-90). I also lucked across, while searching for these texts, The Continuum Encyclopedia of Modern Theory and Criticism, which proved to be a valuable resource. The only difficulty I had in the search process was trying to understand and define Iser's reader-response theory. ABELL provided the most comprehensive bibliographic sources. Available online at is a comprehensive bibliography created at The Critical Theory Institute, University of California, Irvine, by Eddie Yeghiayan for the Wellek Library Lectures for 1994, though the reliability of that resource has not been determined.
Criteria for selection
I chose my 10 seminal works from the collected bibliographies of the aforementioned sources and the biographical data mentioned by Norton and Wolfreys. Works mentioned in Norton and Wolfreys hold considerable weight because both books seem to highlight only important works. Iser has also contributed to literary criticism, but since neither biography makes much mention of them, I have only included articles on Walter Pater, T.S. Eliot and Samuel Beckett because they are mentioned in every bibliography. I have also included a criticism of Iser by Stanley Fish, "Why No One is Afraid of Wolfgang Iser," and Iser's response, "Talk Like Whales: A Reply to Stanley Fish."
I chose to list articles first by chronological order, Fish's article and Iser's response, then a pamphlet where Iser first introduces his views on reader response, then books in chronological order. Since Iser's main contribution is his reader-response theory, most of the citations focus on works that deal with that topic. I have chosen to include the English translations and dates when possible.

Iser, Wolfgang. "Walter Pater und T.S. Eliot. Der Übergang zur Modernität." Germanisch-Romanische Monatsschrift 9 (1959): 391-408.
--------. "Samuel Becketts dramatische Sprache." Germanisch-Romanische Monatsschrift 11 (1961): 451-467.
Fish, Stanley. "Why No One is Afraid of Wolfgang Iser." Diacritics 11 (1) (1981): 2-13.
Iser, Wolfgang. "Talk like Whales: A Reply to Stanley Fish." Diacritics 11 (3) (1981):82-87.
Iser, Wolfgang. Die Appellstruktur der Texte. Unbestimmtheit als Wirkungsbedingung literarisher Prosa. Konstanzer Universitätsreden, 28. Constance: Universitätsverlag, 1970. 38pp. 2d edition, 1971. 41pp. 4th edition, 1979.

Iser, Wolfgang. Walter Pater. Die Autonomie des Ästhetischen. Tübingen: Niemeyer, 1960.
---------. The Implied Reader: Patterns of Communication in Prose Fiction from Bunyan to Beckett. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1974.
-------. The Act of Reading: A Theory of Aesthetic Response. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1978.
-------. Prospecting: From Reader Response to Literary Anthropology. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1989.
-------. The Range of Interpretation. New York: Columbia University Press, 2000. The Wellek Library Lectures.

Greg Locascio
ENGL 501
Summer 2005
Dr. Baker
Bibliographers exercise

Donald Goddard Wing

Donald Goddard Wing devoted his life’s work to a singular pursuit. From 1932 until his death in 1972, Wing “was engaged in creating, compiling, and revising the great work of enumerative bibliography by which he will be remembered, the Short-Title Catalogue of English Books, 1641-1700 (STC)” (Baker 339).
Wing was born August 20, 1904 in Anthol, MA, the son of Frank and Edith Wing. His bibliographic tendencies showed early in his life when around the age of 10 he filled notebooks with alphabetical listings of actors and actresses, including all the roles and movies they appeared in. He attended public schools before entering Yale University. Michael T. Kaufman, in an interview with Wing published in the August 12, 1972 edition of The New York Times, quotes Wing as saying “When I graduated from Yale in 1926, all the seniors were asked what they dreamed of doing, and I said I wanted to read second-hand book catalogues” (Baker 340). Wing also studied at Trinity College, Cambridge, MA, from 1926-27 and earned a master’s degree in English from Harvard in 1928. He received his Ph.D. from Yale in 1932 “for a dissertation on ‘The Origins of the Comedy of Humor’” (340).
Wing married Charlotte Farquhar on June 28, 1930. They had two children, Robert and Cathy. He spent his entire career, from 1928 to 1970, as a librarian and bibliographer at the Yale University library. He was the assistant reference librarian from 1930-39; head of accessions from 1939-45; associate librarian, 1945-65; and associate librarian for collections of the libraries, 1966-70 (Contemporary Authors 437). “In 1967-1968 Wing was the first Yale librarian to be awarded a sabbatical” (Baker 340).
Early in Wing’s career at the Yale Library, he assisted in moving early books to the Sterling Memorial Library building and “began to put together a catalogue of the books Yale possessed in 1742. In his research he discovered that very little bibliographical information was available on books in English published from the 1640s to 1700” (Contemporary Authors 437). No supplement yet existed to A.W. Pollard and G.R. Redgrave’s Short-Title Catalogue, 1475-1640 (1926).
In 1935 Wing won a Guggenheim fellowship to search British libraries for books published between 1640 and 1700. Legend has it he sailed for England with 36 shoe boxes full of bibliographical slips and returned with 51 boxes “after searching libraries at Oxford and Cambridge, as well as collections in Scotland, France and Holland” (437). “Wing supplemented personal inspection by reading printed library catalogues and book-dealers’ catalogues” (Baker 340). Wing also inspected the Thomason tracts, collected papers of George Thomason, a Scottish bookseller in London between 1641-61, which “includes at least twenty-two thousand books, pamphlets and sheets” (340).
The first two volumes of Wing’s STC were published in 1945; volume III in 1951. “The volumes were revised several times,” (Contemporary Authors 437); the most recent, according to, in August 1998. Wing also wrote A Gallery of Ghosts: Books Published Between 1641-1700 Not Found in the Short-Title Catalogue, published in 1967. This work “is an attempt to locate more than five thousand titles that Wing found listed in bibliographies and booksellers’ or auction catalogue but had not seen” ((342). Located titles were subsequently included in the STC.
There are three major criticisms of Wing’s STC. One is that it includes only a record of holdings in institutions in the British Isles and United States. Theodore Hofman wrote in The Library (Dec. 1994), “to accommodate the corrections and new material, Wing made the disastrous decision to cancel and alter entry numbers, seemingly oblivious to the fact that the old Wing numbers had become indispensable to the world of cataloguing and scholarship.” (As quoted in Baker 342). A third is that Wing’s abbreviations were confusing and too short. But for all of the STC’s shortcomings, literary scholars regard the period from 1641-1700 as “the Wing period” (343). Wing died on October 8, 1972.

Works cited

Baker, William. Rosenblum, Joseph, editor. Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 187: American Book Collectors and Bibliographers, 2nd series, Gale Research (Detroit, MI), 1997. pp. 339-43.

Contemporary Authors, Volume 181: A Bio-Bibliographical Guide to Current Writers, Gale Research (Detroit, MI), 1998. pp. 437-8.

Wing’s bibliography

Short-Title Catalogue of Books Printed in England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales and British America and of English Books Printed in Other Countries, 1641-1700, three volumes, Columbia University for the Index Society (New York City), 1945-51, second edition, Volume 1, revised, Modern Language Association (MLA) (New York City), 1998, Volume 2, revised, MLA, 1982, Volume 3, revised, MLA, 1988.

A Gallery of Ghosts: Books Published Between 1641-1700 Not Found in the Short-Title Catalogue, Index Committee of the MLA (New York City), 1967.

“The Making of the Short-Title Catalogue, 1641-1700,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, 45 (1951): 59-69, republished in The Bibliographical Society of America 1904-79: A Retrospective Collection (Charlottesville: Published for the Bibliographical Society of America by the University Press of Virginia, 1980), pp. 241-51.

“Wing on Wing,” Yale Library Gazette, 44 (July 1969): pp. 3-7.

Researcher narrative

I started my search about Donald Wing online with ABELL and LION, and came up with the STC. Wing is also listed in association with an index to the Thomason Tracts, because the compilers gained valuable insight from Wing’s STC. So it was a little confusing for me as a researcher to figure out that Wing did not ALSO write the index. I then searched through an index to the Dictionary of Literary Biography at the back of one of its volumes and found Baker’s biography of Wing. This proved to be the most valuable resource into Wing’s research processes and biographical details. The Baker article lists Wing’s daughter as Cathya, while the Contemporary Authors article lists her as Cathy. Baker lists Wing’s date of death as Oct. 8, 1972, but in the lead paragraph writes, “From 1932 until his death in 1971…” (339). Contemporary Authors confirms that Wing died in 1972, but does not list a date. Baker writes that correspondence relating to the STC is in the Donald Wing Correspondence Archive, Yale University Library. Has this correspondence been published in other sources? What value would it have to bibliographers and literary scholars? Has anyone read these correspondences and written any scholarly articles? I also could not find any secondary bibliographic sources pertaining to Wing other than what is cited in Baker and Contemporary Authors.
I have decided to include the papers I've written for my English 501 class here. Why not? I worked hard on them.

Greg Locascio
English 501
Summer 2005
Author Exercise

Charles Bukowski

Author’s life

The life of Charles Bukowski is steeped in semi-autobiographical lore. Bukowski often wrote about himself through the thinly veiled character of Henry Chinaski, a hard-driving, heavy-drinking, womanizing alcoholic ne’er-do-well. And although Bukowski also lived up to that description, he found time enough to write more than 60 books of fiction and poetry, and left behind enough unpublished materials that new works have been published nearly every year after his death in 1994.
Bukowski was born on August 16, 1920, in Andernach, Germany, the only child of Henry Charles Bukowski, Sr., and a German mother, Katherine Fett Bukowski. The family moved to Los Angeles in 1922, and except for some brief and well-documented forays to Philadelphia and New Orleans, Bukowski made L.A. his home for the rest of his life.
Bukowski claimed to be influenced by D.H. Lawrence, James Thurber, John Dos Passos and Sherwood Anderson. His direct, violent style of writing has often been compared to the poet Robinson Jeffers. Ernest Hemingway is mentioned more than any other author in Bukowski’s poetry. Bukowski emulated Hemingway’s exaggerated masculinity, love of violent sport (though Bukowski preferred boxing to bullfighting), and confronting death with honor and defiance.
Bukowski attended Los Angeles City College in the late 1930s and early 40s, but never graduated. He had only four poems published in the 40s, and did not start to write prolifically until the late 50s and early 60s. He lived the life of a homeless alcoholic and wandered the country for 10 years. His first chapbook, a collection of short poems, Flower, Fist and Bestial Wail, was published in 1960. And although Bukowski continued to work as a postal employee for 10 years, he was well on his way to literary fame. In the 1960s he published 10 books of poetry with 10 different publishers. His first novel, Post Office, catapulted him to such popular and critical success that he was able to quit his job and take on writing full-time.

Why Bukowski?

The first book I read by Bukowski was Run with the Hunted: A Charles Bukowski Reader, in the spring of 1994, around the same time Bukowski died. I’ve since read a book or two a year by him. Little did I know, before taking on this project, how large his corpus is. I think it is amazing that a raging mad alcoholic could produce such beautiful work in such abundance. Bukowski is one of the most imitated and well-known poets. And for good reason. His straightforward, honest style is accessible and easy to digest. Many find his subject matter and shocking style offensive.


The sheer volume of works by and about Bukowski made organization a difficult task. I found my sources using online resources: ABELL, LION, MLA Bibliography and the Humanities Index. I also checked out what was for sale by and about Bukowski at Print resources I checked out were the Times Literary Supplement Index, the print version of the MLA bibliography, the Dictionary of Literary Biography, Contemporary Literary Criticism, Contemporary Authors and whatever books by Bukowski available at Founders Memorial Library. One major error I saw perpetuated throughout the citations is listing John Martin as the author of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word, The Line, The Way (2003). Martin edited this collection of Bukowski’s poems. Martin is the founder and publisher of Black Sparrow Press, a publishing company started in 1966 that owes its success and survival to Bukowski.

Still to do

The only incomplete section to my bibliography are periodical citations. I need to check the indexes of all the major North American and European newspapers for references to Bukowski. I would also like to include a list of movies that either Bukowski has appeared in or are based on Bukowski’s works.

What I’ve Learned

I’ve learned that attempting to do a bibliography on as well-known an author as Bukowski is a daunting task. If I had this assignment to do over again I would pick a lesser author and do a more complete and thorough bibliographical search.


1. Kane, Thomas. “The Deaths of the Authors: Literary Celebrity and Automortography in Acker, Barthelme, Bukowski, and Carver’s Last Acts.” Literature Interpretation Theory (15:4) 2004, pp. 409-43.

Kane examines works produced by authors as they were dying, particularly Kathy Acker, Donald Barthelme, Charles Bukowski and Raymond Carver. Kane wrote that “they all write a kind of mortography: a writing that attempts to represent death” (Kane 409). The work of Bukowski’s that Kane analyzes is Pulp, Bukowski’s last novel that was published months after Bukowski died. Kane calls Pulp “a parody and homage to the detective genre” (414). One of the main characters in the novel is Lady Death, who hires detective Nick Belane to find author Louis-Ferdinand Celine in Los Angeles.

2. Masterson, Donald. “’Jeffers Is My God’: Charles Bukowski’s Commentary on Robinson Jeffers.” Jeffers Studies (5:2) Spring 2001, pp. 10-20.

Masterson examines the attraction that Charles Bukowski had for Robinson Jeffers. “Jeffer’s unmitigated poetic language, his splendid isolation, and even his dark, apocalyptic vision very much appealed to Bukowski, the self-acknowledged loner and tough guy” (Masterson 10). Masterson wrote that Bukowski and Jeffers shared a disdain for the literary establishment that “damaged Jeffers’s reputation and continually denied Bukowski access to the mainstream of American letters” (15). Masterson points out that Bukowski and Jeffers both used dinosaurs as a metaphor for humanity.

3. Locklin, Gerald. “Bukowski: A Life / The Buk Book: Musings on Charles Bukowski.” Review of Contemporary Fiction (18:2) 1998, p. 244.

Locklin, who also wrote a book about Charles Bukowski, Charles Bukowski: A Sure Bet, reviews two other books written about him, Neeli Cherkovski’s Bukowski: A Life, and Jim Christy’s The Buk Book: Musings on Charles Bukowski. Locklin writes that Cherkovski’s book is not “the definitive biography of Bukowski, but is a useful start and written in the clear, direct style of the master” (Locklin 244). His only criticism is that Cherkovski did not do more research on Bukowski’s youth. Locklin calls Christy’s book “brief, rollicking, sensationalistic, and, I suppose, in the worst of taste” (244).

4. Yezzi, David. Review of Open All Night: New Poems by Charles Bukowski. Poetry (178:2) May 2001, pp. 105-6.

Yezzi is no fan of Bukowski. He writes that if you are still a fan of Bukowski past the age of 30 “we had better part ways now” (Yezzi 105). “Persona presides over Bukowski’s work like a mischievous god – Loki with a taste for Pabst Blue Ribbon and foul-mouthed women” (105). The only credit Yezzi gives Bukowski is to write that he “tells some comical tall tales” (106). But he is mostly critical of Bukowski’s veiled persona Henry Chinaski, the self-parody of his blustery character and his “scabrous, narratives as verse” (106).

5. Campbell, James. Review of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word the Line the Way: New Poems by Charles Bukowski. Times Literary Supplement, July 18, 2003, p. 32.

Campbell reviews Sifting…, which is listed in the article by its more generic UK titles, New Poems, Book One and New Poems, Book Two. Campbell calls Bukowski’s novels “repetitive and long-winded, but at their best his short stories are perfectly judged in tone and content” (Campbell 32). He compares Bukowski’s narrative style to Raymond Chandler. Campbell writes that “admirers will welcome this posthumous offering, even in two volumes that might have easily been made into one volume at the same price” (32).

6. Smith, J.P. Review of Against the American Dream: Essays on Charles Bukowski by Harrison, Russell. Times Literary Supplement, March 24, 1995, p. 23.

Smith is critical of Harrison’s Against… and writes that “Harrison’s own reading is a distinctly academic, skewed and partial affair, focusing almost exclusively on the books of the 1970s and 80s…” (Smith 23). Smith disagrees with Harrison’s assertion that politics played a hidden role in Bukowski’s writings because “Harrison clearly doesn’t accept Bukowski’s own repeated statements to the contrary” (23). But Smith gives Harrison kudos for proving that Bukowski’s work can stand up to literary analysis.

7. Dobozy, Tamas. “In the Country of Contradictions the Hypocrite is King: Defining Dirty Realism in Charles Bukowski’s Factotum.” Modern Fiction Studies (Department of English, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN) (47: 1) 2001, pp. 43-68.

Of all the seven secondary works I chose to annotate, Dobozy’s article is the most scholarly and difficult to decipher. Dobozy writes that Bukowski’s Factotum provides “a model of subversive operativity within postindustrial capital…” (Dobozy 44). Can one project a sophisticated post-modernistic ethos on Bukowski’s works, because he certainly did not write with the intention to criticize post-industrial capital. Dobozy tries, but whatever success he achieves in connecting Bukowski’s writing to postmodern thought is lost in his murky, posturing, overly-intellectual style.


The bibliography is listed chronologically, starting with a primary bibliography of the author. Bukowski wrote novels, poetry, reviews and forewards/prefaces. Subject headings in the secondary bibliography include: articles, books, literary reference materials, periodicals and obituaries. Citations in bold are included in my annotations.
Although Charles Bukowski died on March 9, 1994, works by him have been published posthumously nearly every year since his death. The only problems I encountered were trying to find all the periodicals listings. I will need more time to list every mention of the author in newspapers and magazines.

Primary bibliography

A1. Bukowski, Charles. In the Shadow of the Rose. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1991.

A2. Bukowski, Charles. “Pen and Drink.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (4), pp. 22-32, previously published in Weekend Guardian, Dec. 14-15, 1991.
A3. Bukowski, Charles. “The Trash Can.” Literary Review: An International Journal of Contemporary Writing (35:3) Spring 1992, p. 310.

A4. Bukowski, Charles. “After Reading a Certain Poet.” Midwest Quarterly (33) Summer 1992, p. 405.

A5. Bukowski, Charles. “Everywhere, Everywhere.” Midwest Quarterly (33) Summer 1992, p. 406.

A6. Bukowski, Charles. “The Modern Life.” Antaeus (69) Autumn 1992, p. 69.

A7. Bukowski, Charles. “Bach, Come Back.” Antaeus (69) Autumn 1992, p. 70-1.

A8. Bukowski, Charles. “The Crowd.” Midwest Quarterly (34), Autumn 1992, pp. 60-1.

A9. Bukowski, Charles. The Last Night of the Earth Poems. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1992.

A10. Bukowski, Charles. “Not Much Singing.” American Poetry Review (22) May/June 1993, p. 46.

A11. Bukowski, Charles. “A New War.” Prairie Schooner (67) Fall 1993, p. 167.

A12. Bukowski, Charles. “The Laughing Heart.” Prairie Schooner (67) Fall 1993, p. 168.

A13. Bukowski, Charles. “The Depression Kid.” Midwest Quarterly (34) Winter 1993, p. 209-11.

A14. Bukowski, Charles. (author of preface) Fante, John. Ask the Dust. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1993.

A15. Bukowski, Charles. Screams from the Balcony: Selected Letters 1960-1970 (Volume 1) Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1993.

A16. Bukowski, Charles. Run with the Hunted: A Charles Bukowski Reader. Ed. John Martin. New York: Harper Collins, 1993.

A17. Bukowski, Charles. “Musings.” Antaeus (73/74) Spring 1994, pp. 77-9.

A18. Bukowski, Charles. “Cold Summer.” Poetry (164:4) July 1994.

A19. Bukowski, Charles. “Between the Earthquake, the Volcano and the Leopard.” Antaeus (75/76) Autumn 1994, pp. 241-6.

A20. Bukowski, Charles. Pulp. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1994.

A21. Bukowski, Charles (author of foreward) Richmond, Steve. Hitler Painted Roses. Northville, MI: Sun Dog Press, 1994.

A22. Bukowski, Charles. Living on Luck: Selected Letters 1960s-1970s (Volume 2) Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1995.

A23. Bukowski, Charles (with Kenneth Price). Heat Wave. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Graphic Arts, 1995.

A24. Bukowski, Charles. Confession of a Coward. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1995.

A25. Bukowski, Charles. “All Right, So Camus Had to Give Speeches Before the Academies and Get His Ass Killed in a Car-Wreck.” Chicago Review (42: 3-4) 1996, pp. 118-19.

A26. Bukowski, Charles. Betting on the Muse: Poems and Stories. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1996.

A27. Bukowski, Charles. Bone Palace Ballet: New Poems. New York: Ecco, 1997.

A28. Bukowski, Charles. The Captain is Out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship. New York: Ecco, 1998.

A29. Bukowski, Charles. Reach for the Sun: Selected Letters 1978-1994 (Volume 3). New York: Ecco, 1999.

A30. Bukowski, Charles. What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through the Fire: New Poems. New York: Ecco, 1999.

A31. Bukowski, Charles. Open All Night: New Poems. New York: Ecco, 2000.

A32. Bukowski, Charles. “Little Poem.” Ohio Review (62/63) 2001, p. 100-1. Reprint from (5) 1973.

A33. Bukowski, Charles. The Night Torn Mad with Footsteps: New Poems. New York: Ecco, 2001.

A34. Bukowski, Charles. Sifting Through the Madness for the Word the Line the Way: New Poems. Ed. Martin, John. (Published in UK as New Poems: Book One and New Poems: Book Two). New York: Ecco; London: Virgin, 2003. Two volumes.

A35. Bukowski, Charles. The Flash of Lightning Behind the Mountain. New York: Ecco, 2004.

A36. Bukowski, Charles. Slouching Toward Nirvana. New York: Ecco, 2005.

Secondary Bibliography


B1. Mamchur, C. “On a Glider to Hell?” Prairie Journal of Canadian Literature (17) 1991, pp. 32-7.

B2. Robbins, Doren. “Drinking Wine in the Slaughterhouse with Septuagenarian Stew: For Bukowski at 71.” Onthebus (3: 2/4: 1) 1991, 282-5.

B3. Smith, Jules. Review of Hank: The Life of Charles Bukowski by Neeli Cherkovski. Times Literary Supplement, Nov. 29, 1991, p. 25.

B4. Girlanda, Elio. “Hollywood Story.” Cinema Studio (5-6) Jan.-June 1992, pp. 74-5.

B5. Olson, Ted. “Two Poets Listening to Life: Bukowski and Jeffers.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (4) 1992, pp. 2-8.

B6. Wakoski, Diane. “It Is Instructive to Look at the Way Attitudes Towards Charles Bukowski’s Poetry Have Evolved, but Not Changed.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 4-7.

B7. Flanagan, Bob. “On Bukowski & His Paintings.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (4) 1992, pp. 9-11.

B8. Harrison, Russell T. “A Brooklyn Madness.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 10-14.

B9. Weddle, Jeff. “Bukowski the Good: A Celebration of ‘One for the Shoeshine Man.’” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 19-25.
“Recent Writing by or about Charles Bukowski (and other Stuff).” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (4), p. 21.

B10. Calonne, David Stephen. “Two on the Trapeze: Charles Bukowski and William Saroyan.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 26-35.

B11. Smith, Joan Jobe. “Charles Bukowski: The Poet as Entertainment.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (4) 1992, pp. 35-41.

B12. Weddle, Laura T. “The Healing Power of Art: Bukowski’s ‘The Twins.’” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 36-9.

B13. Hart, Hugh. “Champion Loser: The Life and Hard Times of Charles Bukowski.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 44-7.

B14. Barker, David. “Charles Bukowski: The First Quarter Century: A Bibliographic Survey of His Early Publications, 1944-1969.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (5-6) 1992, pp. 51-61.

B15. Woods, William Walker. “Rhetorical Theory Concerning the Making of a Writer in the Poetry of Charles Bukowski,” Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Texas Woman’s University, 1992 [Abstract in Dissertation Abstracts International (54) 1993, 936a].

B16. Wong, Richard. “The Day I Met Bukowski.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 5-6.

B17. Anderson, Duane. “A Bukowski Wish List.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 7-8.

B18. “Recent Writings By or About Charles Bukowski,” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 11-14.

B19. Coyne, Kevin. “A Poetry Slam Review.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 17-18.

B20. Harrison, Russell T. “The Letters of Charles Bukowski.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 8-9, 17-29.

B21. Schwada, Jim. “Man the Humping Guns: The Roominghouse Madrigals.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 21-3.

B22. Kaul, Bill. “Charles Bukowski: Some Facts.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 25-7.

B23. Basinski, Michael. “20 Tanks From Kasseldown.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 28-9.

B24. Sandrag, Robert. “Bukowski in Mistranslation.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 8-9, 40-2.

B25. Basinski, Michael. “His Wife, the Painter, The Old Man on the Corner, and Waste Basket.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 40-3.

B26. Basinski, Michael. “Charles Bukowski: In the American Grain and Other Matters.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 8-9, 52-6.

B27. Weddle, Jeff. “The Day It Snowed in L.A.” Sure: The Charles Bukowski Newsletter (7) 1993, pp. 55-7.

B28. Anonymous, “Charles Bukowski: An Unlikely Jeffers Tribute.” Robinson Jeffers Newsletter (90) 1994, pp. 6-7.

B29. Ziegler, Robert. “From a Charles Bukowski Reader.” Notes on Contemporary Literature (25:4) 1995, pp. 13-14.

B30. Smith, J.P. Review of Against the American Dream: Essays on Charles Bukowski by Harrison, Russell. Times Literary Supplement, March 24, 1995, p. 23.

B31. Sward, Robert. Review of The Bukowski/Purdy Letters: A Decade of Dialogue, 1964-1974 by Seamus Cooney. American Book Review (16:6) 1995, pp. 17-18.

B32. Madigan, Andrew J. “What Fame Is: Bukowski’s Exploration of Self.” Journal of American Studies (30:3) 1996, pp. 447-61.

B33. Charlson, David Jon. “Charles Bukowski: Autobiographer, Gender Critic, Iconoclast.” Doctoral dissertation, University of Kansas, 1995. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences (56:11) May 1996, pp. 4394-5.

B34. Halliburton, Lloyd. “Corrington, Bukowski and the Loujon Press.” Louisiana Literature: A Review of Literature and Humanities (13:1) Spring 1996, pp. 103-9.

B35. Madigan, Andrew J. “Bukowski’s ‘I Met a Genius.’” Explicator (55:4) 1997, 232-3.

B36. Madigan, Andrew J. “Countersystem Analysis and Social Criticism in the
B37. Works of Charles Bukowski, Jack Kerouac, and J.D. Salinger.” Doctoral dissertation, Saint Louis University, 1996. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences (57:7) Jan. 1997, p. 3022.

B38. Locklin, Gerald. “Charles Bukowski.” In: Westbrook, Max (preface); Flores, Dan (chronology); Updating the Literary West. Fort Worth, TX: Western Literature Association, in association with Texas Christian University Press, 1997.

B39. Varner, Paul. Review of Charles Bukowski: A Sure Bet by Gerald Locklin. Western American Literature (33:1) 1998, pp. 98-9.

B40. Locklin, Gerald. “Bukowski: A Life / The Buk Book: Musings on Charles Bukowski.” Review of Contemporary Fiction (18:2) 1998, p. 244.

B41. Locklin, Gerald. Review of The Captain is out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship by Charles Bukowski. Review of Contemporary Fiction (18:3) 1998, pp. 237-8.

B42. Cherkovski, Neeli. “Bukowski on Jeffers: Excerpts from a Memoir.” Jeffers Studies (2:1) Winter 1998, pp. 15-18.

B43. McKee, Louis. Review of The Charles Bukowski Second Coming Years by A.D. Winans. Onthebus (15/16), 1999, 276-8.

B44. Baker, Phil. Review of Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life by Howard Sounes. Times Literary Supplement, Jan. 15, 1999, p. 9.

B45.Martin, Justin. “Black Sparrow Press: Bukowski Was Just the First.” Poets & Writers (27:3) May/June 1999, pp. 40-3.

B46. Cook, Bruce. Review of Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life by Howard Sounes, Book World, July 11, 1999, p. 6.

B47. Gargan, William. Review of Reach for the Sun: Selected Letters, 1978-1994. Library Journal, July 1999, p. 89.

B48. McKee, Louis. Review of Charles Bukowski: A Sure Bet by Gerald Locklin. Onthebus (15/16) 1999, pp. 276-8.

B49. McKee, Louis. Review of Spinning Off Bukowski by Steve Richmond. Onthebus (15/16) 1999, pp. 276-8.

B50. Watson, Martha; Thomas, John D. Review of Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life by Howard Sounes. Biography (22:4) Fall 1999, p. 638.

B51. Donnelly, Ben. Review of Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life by Howard Sounes. Review of Contemporary Fiction (19:3) Fall 1999, p. 180.

B52. Brantingham, John Michael; Haven, Mike. “Gerald Locklin’s Influence on Charles Bukowski’s Pulp.” Notes on Contemporary Literature (30:2) 2000, pp. 4-6.

B53. Brantingham, John; Haven, Mick. “Cracking Bukowski’s Number Code in Pulp.” Notes on Contemporary Literature (30:1) 2000, pp. 7-8.

B54. Spitzer, Mark. Review of Charles Bukowski: Laughing with the Gods: Interview Transcription by Fernando Pivano and Simona Viciani by Fernando Pivano. Cybercorpse (7) 2000.

B55. Yusti, Carlos. “Bukowski, la literature chatarra.” Revista de Arte y Cultura, October 2000.

B56. Friedman, Norman. “Locklin, the Beats, and Bukowski.” Spring: The Journal of the E.E. Cummings Society (10), 2001. pp. 128-37.

B57. Brantingham, John Michael; Haven, Mike. “Wish They All Could Be California Writers.” Spring: The Journal of the E.E. Cummings Society (10) 2001, pp. 112-17.

B58. Masterson, Donald. “’Jeffers Is My God’: Charles Bukowski’s Commentary on Robinson Jeffers.” Jeffers Studies (5:2) Spring 2001, pp. 10-20.

B59. Dobozy, Tamas. “In the Country of Contradictions the Hypocrite is King: Defining Dirty Realism in Charles Bukowski’s Factotum.” Modern Fiction Studies (Department of English, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN) (47: 1) 2001, pp. 43-68.

B60. Yezzi, David. Review of Open All Night: New Poems by Charles Bukowski. Poetry (178:2) May 2001, pp. 105-6.

B61. Fox, Hugh. Review of The Holy Grail: Charles Bukowski and the Second Coming Revolution by A.D. Winans. Small Press Review/ Small Magazine Review (34: 7/8) 2002, pp. 1,4.

B62. Grapes, Jack. “Tender Agonies: Letters of Charles Bukowski.” Onthebus (17/18) 2002, 20-7.

B63. Campbell, James. Review of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word the Line the Way: New Poems by Charles Bukowski. Times Literary Supplement, July 18, 2003, p. 32.

B64. Encke, Jeffrey. “Run of the Mill Lunacy.” Journal of American Studies (37:1) April 2003, p. 47-58.

B65. Kane, Thomas. “The Deaths of the Authors: Literary Celebrity and Automortography in Acker, Barthelme, Bukowski, and Carver’s Last Acts.” Literature Interpretation Theory (15:4) 2004, pp. 409-43.

B66. Brandt, Kenneth K. “Saying What He Means: Linguistic Proportion in the Poetry of Charles Bukowski.” Notes on Contemporary Literature (34:4) 2004, pp. 12-15.

B67. Economou, George. Review of Sifting Through the Madness for the Word the Line the Way: New Poems by Charles Bukowski. World Literature Today: A Literary Quarterly of the University of Oklahoma (Norman) (78: 3 / 4) Sep.-Dec. 2004, pp. 97-8.

B68. Kirsch, Adam. “Smashed: The Pulp Poetry of Charles Bukowski.” New Yorker (81:4) March 14, 2005, pp. 132-6.


C1. Cherkovski, Neeli. Hank: The Life of Charles Bukowski. New York: Random House, 1991.

C2. Cooney, Seamus. Screams from the Balcony: Selected Letters, 1960-1970. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1993.

C3. Harrison, Russell. Against the American Dream: Essays on Charles Bukowski. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1994.

C4. Cooney, Seamus. Living on Luck: Selected Letters, 1960s-1970s: vol. 2. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1995.

C5. Locklin, Gerald. Charles Bukowski: A Sure Bet. Sudbury, MA: Water Row Press, 1996.

C6. Joyce, William. Miller, Bukowski & Their Enemies: Essays on Contemporary Culture. Greensboro, NC: Avisson Press, 1996.

C7. Richmond, Steve. Spinning Off Bukowski. Northville, MI: Sun Dog Press, 1996.

C8. Winans, A.D. The Charles Bukowski Second Coming Years. Coventry: Beat Scene Press, 1996.

C9. Christy, Jim. The Buk Book: Musings on Charles Bukowski. Toronto: ECW Press; London: Turnaround, 1997.

C10. Brewer, Gay. Charles Bukowski. New York: Twayne; London: Prentice Hall, 1997.

C11. Sounes, Howard. Charles Bukowski: Locked in the Arms of a Crazy Life. Edinburgh: Rebel; New York: Grove Press, 1998.

C12. Krumhansl, Aaron. A Descriptive Bibliography of the Primary Publications of Charles Bukowski. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 1999.

C13. Pivano, Fernando. Charles Bukowski: Laughing with the Gods: Interview Transcription by Fernando Pivano and Simona Viciani. Northville, MI: Sun Dog Press, 2000.

C14. Sounes, Howard. Bukowski in Pictures. Edinburgh, Scotland: Rebel, 2000.

C15. Moore, Steven. Beerspit Night and Cursing: The Correspondence of Charles Bukowski and Sheri Martinelli, 1960-1967. Santa Rosa, CA: Black Sparrow Press, 2001.

C16. Norse, Harold. Fly Like a Bat out of Hell: The Letters of Harold Norse and Charles Bukowski. New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press; London: Orion, 2002.

C17. Winans, A.D. The Holy Grail: Charles Bukowski and the Second Coming Revolution. Paradise, CA: Dustbooks, 2002.

C18. Duval, Jean-Francois. Bukowski and the Beats: A Commentary on the Beat Generation; Followed By An Evening at Buk’s Place: An Interview with Charles Bukowski. Transcripted by Alison Ardron. Northville, MI: Sun Dog Press, 2002.

C19. Calonne, David Stephen. Sunlight Here I Am: Interviews and Encounters, 1963-1993. Northville, MI: Sun Dog Press, 2003.


(arranged alphabetically by title)

D1. Booklist, Feb. 15, 1993, p. 1010; Jan. 15, 1994, p. 893; May 15, 1996, p. 1563; May 15, 1998, Mike Tribby, review of The Captain is out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship, p. 1587; Dec. 15, 1999, review of What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through the Fire, p. 752; Dec. 1, 2000, Ray Olson, review of Open All Night: New Poems, p. 689.

D2. Bookwatch, July 1998, review of The Captain is out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship, p. 1.

D3. Chicago Tribune, Aug. 28, 1994, p. 6.

D4. Kliatt, Jan. 1998, review of Bone Palace Ballet, p. 21.

D5. Los Angeles Magazine, June 1994, p. 76.

D6. Los Angeles Times Book Review, Oct. 30, 1994, p. 11.

D7. New Statesman & Society, June 17, 1994, p. 37.

D8. New York Times Book Review, June 5, 1994, p. 50; Dec. 26, 1999, review of What Matters Most is How Well You Walk Through the Fire, p. 16; Jan. 7, 2001, Kera Bolonik, review of Open All Night: New Poems, p. 18.

D9. Publisher’s Weekly, March 29, 1993, p. 34; Dec. 20, 1993, p. 62; April 29, 1996, p. 66; April 20, 1998, review of The Captain is out to Lunch and the Sailors Have Taken Over the Ship, p. 60; Dec. 6, 1999, review of What Matters Most is How Well You Walk Through the Fire, p. 74; Nov. 20, 2000, review of Open All Night: New Poems, p. 65.

D10. Washington Post Book World, July 14, 1994, p. 2.

Literary reference materials

(alphabetically by title)

E1. Contemporary Literary Criticism. Detroit: Gale, Volume 82, 1994, p. 1-30; Volume 108, 1998, pp. 63-117.

E2. Contemporary Authors New Revision Series. Detroit: Gale, Volume 40, 1993, pp. 45-9; Volume 62, 1998, pp. 63-9

E3. Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 130: American Short Story Writers Since World War II. Detroit: Gale, 1993, pp. 56-64. Volume 169: American Poets Since World War II, Fifth Series. Detroit: Gale, 1996, pp. 63-77.

(alphabetically by title)

F1. Chicago Tribune, March 11, 1994, p. 12.

F2. Entertainment Weekly, March 25, 1994, p. 49.

F3. Facts on File, March 17, 1994, p. 196.

F4. Los Angeles Times, March 10, 1994, p. 1, 24.

F5. New York Times, March 11, 1994, p. B9.

F6. Time, March 21, 1994, p. 26.

F7. Times (London), March 11, 1994, p. 67.

F8. Variety, March 14, 1994, p. 67.

F9. Washington Post, March 11, 1994, p. B5.