When my kid sister was a student at Warren Wilson at least a decade ago, I went down to visit for a few days and found a copy of Ed Dorn’s Hands Up! at The Captain’s Bookshelf in Asheville. I also picked up a number of chapbooks by Amiri Baraka, Philip Whalen, Lew Welch, and Jonathan Williams on that trip (all less than five dollars). Published by Totem Books in association with Cornith in 1964, this is the earliest Dorn in my personal collection. For the next couple days, we’ll be posting books by and related to the poetry of Edward Dorn on the Mimeo Mimeo blog. Here’s the first poem in the book:


The cowboy stands beneath
a brick-orange moon. The top
of his oblong head is blue, the sheath
of his hips
is too.

In the dark brown night
your delicate cowboy stands quite still.
His plain hands are crossed.
His wrists are embossed white.

In the background night is a house,
has a blue chimney top,
Yi Yi, the cowboy’s eyes
are blue. The top of the sky
is too.


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