by Bob Grumman. Xexoxial Editions 10375 Cty Hway A, LaFarge, Wisconsin. 54639.
Book Review by Michael Basinski
Each issue 24 pages - about $20.00 for subscription. Since the 1980s Xerolage, edited by editor, publisher, poet and literary rebel, free spirit, anarchist, futurist, dream time village founder, web-master and electronic poet Miekal And, has been featuring issues of the most progressive vis-poems conceivable. Miekal And has now allowed the space, via Xerolage, for another progressive giant, master poet Bob Grumman, to assemble here in this issue Grumman’s best visual poems. And best they are. Grumman is a progressive concrete poet and, therefore, each of his poems is more than, much more than just a meditative or cute Zen ting thing sitting on a page. Reading Bob’s work is an involved act of reading. One of his visual poems is as startling as anything I’ve ever encountered. They cut to the heat heart and guts and soul, as poems must do. And they are not the pompous art the ruling little lits. All of Bob’s work is the most populous. I have imagined Visual poetry as the left hook of real poetry. The right jab - poems like S.A. Griffin’s can’t knock them out of the ring with one punch. Poetry needs a combination of slugs. And Bob’s work will do it.Bang! Now, I don’t wanna get into explaining each visual poem. Can’t because, you see, you must SEE and I am not here showing. But allow me to note that Grumman utilizes all forms of concrete.
In Grumman’s poetry you are going to encounter a provocative, piecing, insightful, reinventor of mythology, sensitive and progressive artist involved totally in the great poetic cycle of existence. Oh Milton, make room on the bench. Interested in visual poems, Bob Grumman’s Xerolage (as well as any number of other of Miekal And’s Xerolage issues - - - and all of the publishing he produces both on the web and in print) is the primer, the prime, the prime pagan origin, because in the area, the arena of poetry, of visual poetry, he, Grumman is way so good out-there spectacular gone.