Hidden Water Special Edition: The Definitive Frank Stanford Boxset
Street Date: 07/21/2015
THE DEFINITIVE FRANK STANFORD COLLECTION.
“The Mississippi-born, Memphis-bred poet once shot off a double-barreled shotgun in the middle of a party he’d thrown for Allen Ginsberg because he considered some of the guests to be ‘lightweights,’ his longtime friend Bill Willett recently recalled . . . ‘All the lightweights left.’ . . . What About This and Hidden Water, considered together with The Battlefield Where the Moon Says I Love You, give us Stanford’s body of work in one place, more or less, allowing us to explore his cosmos on our own. “
—The Oxford American
*THE HIDDEN WATER SPECIAL EDITION includes two books: Copper Canyon’s 730+ page What About This and Third Man Books 200+ page Hidden Water, and two broadsides featuring Stanford artwork, and a custom notepad.
Born in 1948, Frank Stanford was a prolific poet known for his originality and ingenuity. He has been dubbed "a swamp rat Rimbaud" by Lorenzo Thomas and "one of the great voices of death" by Franz Wright. He grew up in Mississippi, Tennessee, and then Arkansas, where he lived for most of his life and wrote many of his most powerful poems. Stanford died in 1978. He authored over ten books of poetry, including eight volumes in the last seven years of his life.
“What About This… introduces to a broader audience an important and original American poet — sensitive, death-haunted, surreal, carnal, dirt-flecked and deeply Southern — whose promise, only partly fulfilled, it hurts to contemplate. His poems flick on a heretofore unnoticed porch light in your mind.”
—The New York Times
"Hidden Water offers a broad and beautiful collection of photographs, drawings, letters and drafts of poems with notes and edits scribbled in the poet's own hand. It even features a partial inventory of Stanford's record collection (John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Leadbelly) and a picture of the business card he used for his day job . . .And in the end, Stanford's voice is as clear, plain and death-obsessed as ever: "I wandered I sang / I made promises to death and I kept them / so having done / with my work in this world / I dove into that pool.
—The Houston Chronicle
“. . . the long-awaited resurrection of Frank Stanford, a legendary badass from Arkansas, much of whose poetry has been unavailable since his suicide at the age of 29 in 1978 … Stanford was a hell of a metaphor-maker and simile-slinger, and could cast a spell of extreme intensity with a flick of his wrist.”
“Frank Stanford's What About This is a monumental achievement. So much of Stanford's work was unpublished, scattered about in limited-edition, hard-to-find volumes, but now it has been collected and readers will rejoice to discover (or rediscover) a distinct poetic voice…. He was a voracious reader and was heavily influenced by Thomas Merton and French writers. He loved the Surrealists and Rimbaud, Mallarme, Follain and the French filmmakers Cocteauand Buñuel. His poetry is wildly imagistic, imbued with Southern folklore and culture, and it's—to use Stanford's own word—‘strange.’"
"It’s hard to imagine a more fitting subject for a Third Man Books project than the poet Frank Stanford. He’s not quite poetry’s Robert Johnson, but the Mississippi-born Arkansas native’s work reaches beyond poetry’s converted, just as Johnson was a gateway bluesman. Stanford also comes complete with a legend of writing, romance and recklessness.”
Silver Jews singer David Berman recorded a poem from Hidden Water for the Pitchfork website.
*Features ALL of Stanford’s published work.
*NOT AVAILABLE IN BOOKSTORES
*Features unpublished poems, drafts, and never before seen photos.
*Features unpublished correspondence between Stanford, Allen Ginsberg, Pulitzer Prize poet Alan Dugan, and others.
*Features unseen artwork by Ginny Stanford.
*Includes an appreciation by award winning author and Stanford’s friend Steve Stern.
*Includes Stanford reciting his poem “The Boathouse.”