Hot Stones and Cold Cream

Interim Pad is the hippy version of an Open Space. “A misreading of Herman Hesse’s Unterm Rad? A launching pad into inner space? A writing pad? A temporary home? A staging area between two revolutions? Life itself and Interim Pad, a place a poet might be found turned-on?” Published out of Spicer’s hated City Lights in September 1967 (500 copies), this mimeo is a one-shot featuring the usual cast of characters: Ferlinghetti, Ginsberg, Kaufman, Lebel, Pelieu/Beach, Pommey-Vega and Carl Solomon. Edited by Ferlinghetti, Jan Herman and Gail Dusenberry did the production.

I am not a huge fan of City Lights publications but for a period in the mid-to-late 1960s, City Lights put out some great small press material. City Lights Journal, the Beach Books series, Nova Broadcast stuff, San Francisco Earthquake. Breaking out of the Pocket Books format makes all the difference.

The cover image reminds me of Phyllis Willner riding on the back of Hairy Henry Kot’s motorcycle during Now! Day on December 17, 1966. Now! Day was a street festival that celebrated the rebirth of the Haight and the death of money. It did not work. Until recently you could have obtained peace and serenity at Relax Now Day Spa ( located on 2241 Fillmore Street in the Haight. “Drench,” a velvety, rich anti-aging moisturizer” keeps all the baby boomers young and “blissful every time [they] apply it” for $68 a jar. This is a far-cry from Allen Ginsberg’s Pond’s Cold Cream, inscribed by Ginsberg, available on order from Ed Sander’s Peace Eye Catalog Number 1.

Then again, Now! Day’s voodoo may have worked over forty years later. Relax Now Day Spa closed in the past year or so, another victim of the collapse of the global economy and dreadful reviews. For those trying to bleed a stone in the current economy, maybe a hot stone massage is not high on one’s list. You might get burned.


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