Commentaries - November 2015

Lavender Ink interview

Experimental writing in the southlands

Read an interview with Bill Lavender of Lavender Ink, which has been publishing quality work since 1995.

If you’re interested in any of Lavender Ink’s work, go to to find out where you can order. Hope you enjoy this interview with founder and publisher Bill Lavender.

a. How did you start the press, and what is your hope for its future?

I started the press in 1995 with the intention of doing handmade chapbooks of the work of some of my many very talented poet friends. My first books were my own Guest Chain (online at and Rogue Embryo by Camille Martin. The first perfect bound book I did was Lower 48 by Joel Dailey.


In his entry for The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics (2012) on the “objective correlative,” Louis Menand notes that since 1980, the term has appeared in several hundred scholarly articles.[1] There’s also no shortage of forebears of Eliot’s concept, including Washington Allston, Arthur Fairchild, Pater, Coleridge, and Schiller. Robert Stallman’s The Critic’s Notebook (1950) is efficient in staging that conversation; in fact, The Critic’s Notebook in many respects is a textual performance that parallels the objective correlative.

Drumming to your own march, the Sword is mightier than the pen.

Drumming to your own march, the Sword is mightier than the pen.

Drumming to your own march, the Sword is mightier than the pen.
Drumming to your own march, the Sword is mightier than the pen.

In the tradition of iconoclastic South Island, Aotearoa-New Zealand  publishing independence is the innovative and invaluable work of long-term Americano expatriate, Doc Drumheller — through his own poetic experimentalism as personified in his recent book, 10 x (10 + -10) = 0, as well as via his steersmanship and stewardship of the idiosyncratic and instigative Catalyst. I will let him give us a potted (and necessarily selective) history of this significant journal in his own words and also directly from his editorials — 'Catalyst [and here]is a literary arts journal originally published by a collective of artists known as Neoismist Press inside an old volcano in Whakaraupo/Lyttelton, NZ.

Diane Rothenberg: Corn soup & fry bread, a reminiscence

Early this October Diane Rothenberg and I had the chance, too long delayed, to revisit the Allegany Seneca Reservation in upstate New York, where we had spent two years (and many visits besides) in the late 1960s & early 1970s.  In the interim, our dearest & closest Seneca friends — most older than us, some younger — had “passed,” as the expression goes, and the couple of returns we attempted brought a repeated sense of emptiness & loss.