Welcome to the Black Widow Press website
(best viewed at 1280x1024)

Visit our Facebook Page for the most recent information about the press, author readings, etc...

Latest titles from Black Widow Press
(Click on cover art images for a larger view)

-OR-
(Use the button in the description to order through our secure online shopping cart)

Click Here for Recent Second Line Press Titles

Click Here for Recent Crescent City Books Press Titles


tenebraed by Heller Levinson

April 2017 review here.

Further investigations and explorations into the linguistic poetics of the Hinge Universe.......

Whoosh’s, How Much Of’s, Gerundial Geists, Four-Plays, Accidentals, Fecundating Rotational Clusters, MUPAE’s (Mutational Update Panel Animation Extenders), In The _ Of _ ‘s, Fusion Reconnoiters, Smelling’s, With’s, Migratories, plus plus, plus, and now, newly populated with tenebraed , the Hinge Universe bulges with a rare Pulsative Virility. This volume rhapsodizes the potency of the Logos, sanctifying its elasticity, multi-dimensionality, and unceasing capacity to spread fresh seeding to Re-Crystallize our world. This latest Heller Incandescence is further enriched by the new behavioral sproutings: Import/Export/Mine.

In the words of John Olson: “One wonders if there is a tornado in Heller’s skull, a whirling dervish of ‘mental musculature,’ a ‘procreant ecstatically perceptual perpetual tingle.”

Heller Levinson's "Hinge" ignites "velocity" and "flux." Lines, planes, angles, rotate as aural lenses, magnifying vibrations which condense at the realia of the microscopic, possessing entry, say, into the micro-elucidation of Cezanne's colour, or inhabiting the pulse of Van Gogh as he roams the beauty of Arles and its heavens.
- Will Alexander
"To exist only at the junction of language, at the point of its every divagation from speech, while in the realm of being a non-poet, is a welcome attraction for an author who seeks always the obnubilation of meaning. Hinge Theory, by its very definition, is ostensibly too literary, yet if we approach it with a mind as violent as its births and its miscarriages then a rare pleasure emerges, that what feels akin to opening a new textbook on the history of post-poetry. "
- Paul Stubbs
"Through Hinge theory's emphasis on language's cellular nature and each poem's associative leaps, Levinson reminds us that language is rooted in the body and that it ultimately represents that body in social discourse. Relentlessly questioning how we place our words side-by-side, Levinson is causing us to wonder about the way our relationships are structured. It's a sexy politic seeking to change the space we situate our lives in, one rarely pursued since the days of Arthur Rimbaud and Aime Cesaire."
- Jared Demick

Recent review of Hinge Theory:
http://clockwisecat.blogspot.com/2013/04/a-liberating-linguistics-book-review-of.html

Another article on Hinge Theory:
http://paulstubbspoet.wordpress.com/2013/09/01/the-perspicacity-of-repetition-heller-levinsons-hinge-theory-an-essay-by-paul-stubbs/

and more at: http://jivinladybug.wordpress.com/?s=heller

Another article at http://clockwisecat.com/2016/02/scribewise-cat-heller-levinson-and-wrack-lariat/

and another at http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/8080030

Heller Levinson lives in NYC where he studies animal behavior. He has published in over a hundred journals and magazines including Sulfur, Jacket, Hunger, Talisman, First Intensity, Laurel Review, Omega, The Wandering Hermit, Fire (U.K), Alligatorzine, The Jivin' Ladybug, Moria, Woodcoin, etc. His last publication, Wrack Lariat was also published by Black Widow Press. He is the originator of Hinge Theory. Please visit hellerlevinson.com for more information.

 

ISBN: 978-0-9971725-7-7
123 pages $15.00


Penetralia by Clayton Eshleman

 

That Clayton Eshleman has not ceased from exploration over a career spanning more than fifty-five years is witnessed by the bulk, range, and diversity of the present collection of his essential poetry. That he has sought to open up his life and work, to entwine and entangle it with others, through observation and vision, research and scholarship, translation and editing, and collaboration and conversation, all of this reflects Eshleman’s life commitment, indeed a commitment to life in writing poetry.

The world embraced by Eshleman’s poetry is our world. As a contemporary writer, Eshleman’s history is our own: his writing a record and reflection of our times. Eshleman’s story — the story revealed in his poetry — is the story of mid-America meeting the wider world; the story of social and political radicalism, of a counterculture raising a voice in poetry and in art; of the challenges, frustrations and anomie that befell that counterculture and of the continued and indeed on-going drama of empire and overreaching power, from Vietnam and El Salvador to Afghanistan and Iraq. Eshleman’s life in letters has exemplified a commitment to ceaseless, wide-ranging exploration and encounter: with other places, other people, other poetries — foreign and familiar —, other modes of thought and image. As he has written of his work: “I dream of poems that could change something essential / about the way a few people view creation…”

Clayton Eshleman has published roughly 100 books and chapbooks of original poetry, translations, and nonfiction writings, and edited seventy issues of magazines and journals, including the ground-breaking Caterpillar and Sulfur. His writings have appeared in over 500 literary magazines and journals around the world and his books and writings have been translated into a number of languages. It is undoubtedly unnecessary to observe that he made and has fulfilled a life commitment to poetry.

“Nobody is like him in his struggle. With ornery stubbornness he has kept visiting the dark occasions, and brought back for us poems unlike anybody else’s. At times he makes the wildness of most poetry seem merely effete. Because he has gone down and done so with a language fit for his researches: clotted, angry, surprised, full of grunts as a cartoon, full of magical gleams like sunlight striking through chinks of rock, hard as tourmaline, streets of mica peeled away.

I know of no poet who has fed so richly from the thingliness of the world beneath his feet, none who so resists the glamour of beliefs. He is a shaman without a single superstition.”—Robert Kelly

New review here

 

ISBN: 978-0-9971725-8-4
176 pages $19.95


Dada Budapest by John Olson

The third collection of wide ranging prose poems by John Olson to be published by Black Widow Press: Dada Budapest. Forthcoming end of January 2017! Not familiar with his works? Check out Backscatter: New and Collected Poems and Larynx Galaxy. Either one will get you hooked on John's imaginative and frolicking prose poems. A growing body of work truly unlike any other writer you have encountered.

Praise for John Olson's prose poems!

"Extraordinary...the greatest prose poetry [i've] ever read." Philip Lamantia

"John Olson is afraid of no word or trope of words, and especially not of tropes of ideas looming into and out of one another. And no emotion or boundary less compounding of emotions is beyond likelihood in the presence of his surging perceptions as they float in inspiration. Larynx Galaxy is also a syrinx galaxy playing on the panpipes of imagination." -Michael McClure

John Olson's Larynx Galaxy is a cross between The Poetics of Space and The Revolution of Everyday Life. It spins off both of these seminal texts and recreates a new Utopian boundary-free world in which all the senses are engaged simultaneously and the mind is a minefield where you (the reader) must proceed at your own risk. Olson is an encylopedist, a bricologist, an omnivore--the total package, as they say--in the tradition of The Pillow Book and Walden. He has written a text for the ages--brilliant, hallucinatory, clearheaded--verging on the edges of infinity, yet forever at home in the world. --- Lewis Warsh

"Olson is an original, and that accomplishment is an extraordinary feat at this point in the long history of literature. His prose poems do not remind me of anyone else's work. While elements of Surrealism are involved, he is not a Surrealist: while his non-narrative, exploding juxtapositions reveal a background awareness of Surrealism, thematic development is always present, so that a given work of one to three pages, unlike Language Poetry, does not erase itself as it proceeds; there is a floating focus that functions like a jungle gym. On this "gym," Olson displays his linguistic acrobatics, juxtaposing the totally unexpected with, to borrow Hart Crane's marvelous phrase, "the logic of metaphor." So a piece advances in several directions at once and concludes when its duration is sensed as complete." ----Clayton Eshleman

John Olson is an American poet and novelist. Olson has lived for many years in Seattle, Washington. He has published nine collections of poetry and three novels, including his recent novel: In Advance of the Broken Justy, and a book of essays: Essences and Sentences. Other works include Larynx Galaxy, Backscatter: New & Selected Poems and Souls of Wind, nominated for the 2008 Believer Book Award. In 2004, Seattle’s weekly newspaper, The Stranger gave Olson one of its annual "genius awards." His writing notebooks have been exhibited at the University of Washington. Olson's prose poetry has been published and reviewed in print and online poetry magazines around the world.

 

ISBN: 978-0-9971725-6-0
450 pages $19.95


New Titles from Second Line Press
Back to top

The Fortune-Teller by VICTOR SEJOUR (1817-74). Translated by NORMAN R. SHAPIRO. Introduction by M. LYNN WEISS
A Second Line Press title

Penned by a francophone native of Louisiana of African descent, The Fortune-Teller was first performed in French in 1859, just one year after six-year-old Edgardo Mortara was removed from his Jewish home by the Bologna inquisitor after being baptized by a maid. The inquisitor, supported by Pope Pius IX, vowed not to return the boy until his parents converted to Catholicism. In Victor Sejour's touching rendering of the Mortara case, the infant girl Noemi (accent over e) is taken from her Jewish family after being baptized by a wet nurse. Seventeen years later, Noemi's widowed and wealthy mother Gemea (accent over 2nd e) masquerades as a poor fortune-teller in search of Noemi. Featuring a stirring translation by Shapiro and a thoroughly engaging introduction by Weiss, this provocative and important historical drama, written by a Creole of color, highlights the discrimination not only of Sejour's time, but of ours as well.

"Shapiro's superb, lively translations of these two plays invite an intimate and extraordinary look into the complexities of being 'colored' and free in the antebellum South. ... Although circumstances and fear of reprisals may have prevented many of the Creole-of-color literati from addressing forthrightly their social condition, these two plays expose in subtle and veiled ways the conflict of race and class in nineteenth-century Louisiana. M. Lynn Weiss provides excellent introductions and a representative bibliography." —Choice

"These are two remarkable plays, easily the best dramas by an American-born author (long) before O'Neill." — Werner Sollors, professor of comparative literature and African American literature at Harvard University

Also available: Sejour's The Jew of Seville, translated by Norman R. Shapiro with an introduction by M. Lynn Weiss.

VICTOR SEJOUR (1817-74) was born in Louisiana but made his career as a playwright in France. Only one of his plays, The Brown Overcoat, has been previously translated into English.

NORMAN R. SHAPIRO is Distinguished Professor of Literary Translation at Wesleyan University. His many published volumes span the centuries, medieval to modern, and the genres: poetry, theater, and novels. He has won many of the major translation awards and is an Officier de l'ordre des Arts et des lettres de la Republique Francaise and a member of the Academy of American Poets

M. LYNN WEISS is an associate professor of American studies at the College of William and Mary. Previous collaborations with Norman R. Shapiro include Creole Echoes: The Francophone Literature of Nineteenth-Century Louisiana.

  1. ISBN: 978-0-9889627-5-0 185 pages $19.95


ISBN: 978-0-9889627-5-0
185 pages $19.95


The Jew of Seville by VICTOR SEJOUR (1817-74). Translated by NORMAN R. SHAPIRO. Introduction by M. LYNN WEISS
A Second Line Press title

Penned by a francophone native of Louisiana of African descent, The Jew of Seville is a five act verse drama first performed in 1844. It tells the story of Jacob Eliacin, a Jew during the Spanish Inquisition.

As the play opens, Eliacin (now known as Diegarias) is masquerading as a Christian and has become a prominent member of the Court at Seville, where his daughter Ines encounters and is seduced by Don Juan in a sham marriage. Diegarias demands that the nobleman marry his daughter, but a self-serving Moor reveals the truth of Diegarias's identity to Don Juan, who then publicly refuses to marry a Jew's daughter. After this humiliation, Diegarias plots a revenge that entails dire consequences for Ines.

Featuring a stirring translation by Shapiro and a thoroughly engaging introduction by Weiss, this provocative and important historical drama, written by a Creole of color, highlights the discrimination not only of Sejour's time, but of ours as well.

"Shapiro's superb, lively translations of these two plays invite an intimate and extraordinary look into the complexities of being 'colored' and free in the antebellum South. ... Although circumstances and fear of reprisals may have prevented many of the Creole-of-color literati from addressing forthrightly their social condition, these two plays expose in subtle and veiled ways the conflict of race and class in nineteenth-century Louisiana. M. Lynn Weiss provides excellent introductions and a representative bibliography." —Choice

"These are two remarkable plays, easily the best dramas by an American-born author (long) before O'Neill." — Werner Sollors, professor of comparative literature and African American literature at Harvard University

Also available: Sejour's The Jew of Seville, translated by Norman R. Shapiro with an introduction by M. Lynn Weiss.

VICTOR SEJOUR (1817-74) was born in Louisiana but made his career as a playwright in France. Only one of his plays, The Brown Overcoat, has been previously translated into English.

NORMAN R. SHAPIRO is Distinguished Professor of Literary Translation at Wesleyan University. His many published volumes span the centuries, medieval to modern, and the genres: poetry, theater, and novels. He has won many of the major translation awards and is an Officier de l'ordre des Arts et des lettres de la Republique Francaise and a member of the Academy of American Poets

M. LYNN WEISS is an associate professor of American studies at the College of William and Mary. Previous collaborations with Norman R. Shapiro include Creole Echoes: The Francophone Literature of Nineteenth-Century Louisiana.

ISBN: 978-0-9889627-4-3
174 pages $19.95


Creole Echoes: The Francophone Poetry of Nineteenth-Century Louisiana TRANSLATED BY Norman R. Shapiro, INTRODUCTION AND NOTES BY M. Lynn Weiss
A Second Line Press title

"A substantial contribution to the exploration of the multilingual legacy of the United States." -Werner Sollors, Harvard University

American literature is not only more than Hawthorne and Poe; it is more than English.

Long before the Harlem Renaissance, African American poets and their white colleagues were writing in Louisiana, in French, with a quality inspired and polished by a sense of poetic community. These were the Creole poets of the 1800s, creators of a body of work that is at last available in an English translation by renowned translator Norman R. Shapiro.

Creole poets have always eluded easy categorization, infusing European poetic forms with Louisiana themes and Native American and African influences to produce an impressive variety of often highly accomplished and always strikingly engaging verse. The first major collection of its kind, Creole Echoes contains over a hundred of these poems by more than thirty different poets.

The poems gathered here exhibit the Creole poets' wide range of theme, tone, and sensibility. Somber elegies, whimsical verse, animal fables, love sonnets, odes to nature, curses, polemics, and lauds all find voices here.

"What Shapiro has captured is the essence of Francophone Louisiana poetry. He remains true to the poems and the poets while translating the richness of language and style. He portrays the "Creoleness" of the poets and the poems through the "creolized" language and culture to form a "Louisianian" quality where everything mixes together into a true gumbo culture, which is what Louisiana truly is." Cécile Accilien, Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature

"The wonderfully translated selections in Creole Echoes vividly capture the joy and romance of life in New Orleans; the torment of racial oppression; the fragility of human life; and the many other sad and joy-filled realities of nineteenth-century Creole Louisiana."

  • Caryn Cossé Bell, author of Revolution, Romanticicsm, and the Afro-Creole Protest Tradition in Louisiana

 Norman R. Shapiro is Distinguished Professor of Literary Translation at Wesleyan University. His many published volumes span the centuries, medieval to modern, and the genres: poetry, theater, and novels. He has won many of the major translation awards and is an Officier de l'ordre des Arts et des lettres de la Republique Francaise and a member of the Academy of American Poets.

 M. Lynn Weiss is an associate professor of American studies at the College of William and Mary and the author of Gertrude Stein and Richard Wright: The Poetics and Politics of Modernism.

 Werner Sollors is professor of comparative and African American literature at Harvard University and the cofounder and director of the Longfellow Institute. He is the author of Neither Black nor White yet Both: Thematic Explorations of Interracial Literature.

ISBN: 978-0-9889627-6-7
$19.95


New Titles from Crescent City Books Press
Back to top

Iron Angel by David Fulmer
A CCB Press title

No one cares much when a couple of street whores working the lowest rung on the prostitution ladder in 1914 New Orleans are murdered in the same fashion. But when a third sporting woman turns up dead in a crib, a small panic ensues, and Tom Anderson, now beginning his third decade as the King of Storyville, sends word from his hospital bed to Creole detective Valentin St. Cyr.

The detective steps grudgingly into the investigation that propels The Iron Angel, the fifth novel in the acclaimed Storyville series. There's a second tale brewing within these pages. In a convent in Terrabonne Parish, a mysterious woman who is alone and adrift draws the interest of the local sheriff. Valentin works the serial murders as the killer taunts the police, using the moniker Gregory. The detective's old nemesis Captain Picot is furious when he's ordered to let him have the run of the streets; until, that is, he notices something oddly familiar in a message from Terrabonne Parish that mentions a mysterious woman named Evangeline.

Gregory at first keeps one step ahead of Valentin, but the detective is soon checking him and his bloody campaign at every turn. With the detective closing in on him, he devises a plan to offer the captain a deal with the devil. But instead of keeping his end of the bargain, Gregory decides to betray Picot and goes after the mystery woman on his own.

As Valentin races to save Evangeline - whoever she might be - a storm sweeps across the bayou, heading for New Orleans and drives the tale to a wild climax. With The Iron Angel, David Fulmer revives an extraordinary time and place with the same deeply evocative skill that earned the four previous novels such critical acclaim.

Critical acclaim for The Valentin St. Cyr Series

“A beautifully constructed, elegantly presented time trip to a New Orleans of the very early 1900s. The characters are memorable and the period is brilliantly recaptured.” -- The Los Angeles Times

“The best part of this very good book is the writing, the see-it, feel-it, touch-it style. It's a tribute to the power and demands of friendship, and an explication of the curse of the musical genius....” -- The Times-Picayune

“Fulmer is both a fine plotter and a marvelously evocative writer with an eye for character.” -- The Washington Post Book World

“With language that can get as rough as his characters, he paints a realistic picture of one of this country's most famous underworlds--and the beginnings of its greatest indigenous art.” -- The Boston Globe

About the Author

David FulmerDavid Fulmer is the author of eleven critically-acclaimed and award-winning novels. Chasing the Devil's Tail was nominated for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Barry Award, and a Falcon Award, was on Borders' "Best of 2003 List," and won the 2002 Shamus Award. Jass was nominated for the "Best of 2005" lists by Library Journal, Deadly Pleasures Magazine, and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Rampart Street was rated New York Magazine's "Best Novels You've Never Read" and the audiobook won a Benjamin Franklin Award. The Dying Crapshooter's Blues received the BookPage "Ice Pick of the Month Award" among other plaudits and The Blue Door was nominated for the Shamus Award for Best Novel. His books have received superlative reviews from The Times Picayune, The New York Times, Publishers Weekly, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, BookList, Kirkus Reviews, The Baltimore Sun, Mystery Review, The Detroit News, The Telegraph (UK), The Plain Dealer, Crime Spree Magazine, The Boston Globe, Crimetime UK, The Tennessean, Library Journal, Jazz Review, The Christian Science Monitor, and numerous other publications and book websites. His novels have been released in audiobook and have been translated into Italian, French, Japanese, and Turkish. A native of central Pennsylvania, David Fulmer lives in Atlanta with his wife Sansanee Sermprungsuk.

http://www.davidfulmer.com/

 

 

 

 

ISBN: 978-0-9986431-4-4
264 pages $18.00


Lost River by David Fulmer
A CCB Press title

“The atmosphere Fulmer creates is rich, nuanced, and authentic.”
      — Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“Valentin’s fourth case immediately draws the reader into its tapestry of the Big Easy in a memorable bygone era.”
     — Kirkus Reviews

“With his usual lucid prose, Fulmer details the grubby ‘crib’ life that exploited scores of women prostitutes while padding rich men’s wallets. Those looking for some jazzy early 20th- century chills won’t be disappointed.”
     — Publishers Weekly

Critical acclaim for The Valentin St. Cyr Series

“A beautifully constructed, elegantly presented time trip to a New Orleans of the very early 1900s. The characters are memorable and the period is brilliantly recaptured.”
-- The Los Angeles Times

“The best part of this very good book is the writing, the see-it, feel-it, touch-it style. It's a tribute to the power and demands of friendship, and an explication of the curse of the musical genius....”
-- The Times-Picayune

About the Author

David FulmerDavid Fulmer is the author of eleven critically-acclaimed and award-winning novels. Chasing the Devil's Tail was nominated for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Barry Award, and a Falcon Award, was on Borders' "Best of 2003 List," and won the 2002 Shamus Award. Jass was nominated for the "Best of 2005" lists by Library Journal, Deadly Pleasures Magazine, and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Rampart Street was rated New York Magazine's "Best Novels You've Never Read" and the audiobook won a Benjamin Franklin Award. The Dying Crapshooter's Blues received the BookPage "Ice Pick of the Month Award" among other plaudits and The Blue Door was nominated for the Shamus Award for Best Novel. His books have received superlative reviews from The Times Picayune, The New York Times, Publishers Weekly, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, BookList, Kirkus Reviews, The Baltimore Sun, Mystery Review, The Detroit News, The Telegraph (UK), The Plain Dealer, Crime Spree Magazine, The Boston Globe, Crimetime UK, The Tennessean, Library Journal, Jazz Review, The Christian Science Monitor, and numerous other publications and book websites. His novels have been released in audiobook and have been translated into Italian, French, Japanese, and Turkish. A native of central Pennsylvania, David Fulmer lives in Atlanta with his wife Sansanee Sermprungsuk.

http://www.davidfulmer.com/

 

 

 

 

ISBN: 978-0-9986431-3-7
279 pages $18.00


Eclipse Alley by David Fulmer
A CCB Press title

Brand new title in the Valentin St. Cyr Mystery series!

“St. Cyr is a great character, and the fascinating city and its larger-than-life denizens intrigue.”
     —Publishers Weekly

“A wonderful rendition of a particular world at a very distinctive time.”
     —The Times-Picayune (New Orleans)

The latest title in the award winning and critically acclaimed Valentin St. Cyr Mystery series. In the darkness of a May night in 1916, two “sporting girls” walking home through New Orleans’ Storyville district come upon a body that’s been hideously ravaged. And so begins Eclipse Alley, the latest title in the award winning and critically acclaimed Valentin St. Cyr Mystery series.

David FulmerDavid Fulmer is the author of eleven critically-acclaimed and award-winning novels. Chasing the Devil's Tail was nominated for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Barry Award, and a Falcon Award, was on Borders' "Best of 2003 List," and won the 2002 Shamus Award. Jass was nominated for the "Best of 2005" lists by Library Journal, Deadly Pleasures Magazine, and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Rampart Street was rated New York Magazine's "Best Novels You've Never Read" and the audiobook won a Benjamin Franklin Award. The Dying Crapshooter's Blues received the BookPage "Ice Pick of the Month Award" among other plaudits and The Blue Door was nominated for the Shamus Award for Best Novel. His books have received superlative reviews from The Times Picayune, The New York Times, Publishers Weekly, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, BookList, Kirkus Reviews, The Baltimore Sun, Mystery Review, The Detroit News, The Telegraph (UK), The Plain Dealer, Crime Spree Magazine, The Boston Globe, Crimetime UK, The Tennessean, Library Journal, Jazz Review, The Christian Science Monitor, and numerous other publications and book websites. His novels have been released in audiobook and have been translated into Italian, French, Japanese, and Turkish. A native of central Pennsylvania, David Fulmer lives in Atlanta with his wife Sansanee Sermprungsuk.

http://www.davidfulmer.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISBN: 978-0-9986431-5-1
320 pages $18.00


Our Mission

Our "mission" is twofold: to bring back into print (and keep in print) at an accessible price point those authors/titles that have had an impact on the cultural, literary, and/or artistic thought of the 20th (and 21st) century and to publish those poets who are still contributing today in a meaningful way to the same. (Read our full mission statement here.)

We thank you for your support. As a small press, every purchase is important to us in our effort to continue to bring out at least six new titles per year. Watch this web site for updates on print schedules and future titles.

All Black Widow Press books are 6" x 9" trade paperbacks with sewn and glued bindings and printed on acid free paper. Our books are made for longevity.

Please click on the link to our retail stores: