Pimping Green Integer Press and Their Poetry Blog, PIP

Green Integer is a fascinating press.  I love their half-sized pocket books of poetry and obscure novels, packed with weighty, provocative ideas, like Ole Sarvig's, The Sea Below My Window (Green Integer 72).

Green Integer's publisher, Douglas Messerli, has had a poetry blog running for twelve years -- The PIP (Project for Innovative Poetry) -- and I think it's high time I pimped it.  He just posted some interesting pieces on Harry Mathews' poetry, a writer perhaps better known for the innovative novels Cigarettes and Tlooth; and on the Oulipo movement in literature, of which Mathews has remained a vital part in even as the movement itself has faded in influence over the last thirty years.  Faded in influence or not, I still love the writers of Oulipo; namely Georges Perec (Life, A User's Manual), Gilbert Sorrentino (Mulligan Stew; The Orangery), and Walter Abish's (Alphabetical Africa) contributions to the group.  There are dozens of other accomplished writers in Oulipo I've just not gotten around to reading, but hope to soon.


  1. thanks for sharing the link. i've tried to read a couple of green integer books but they weren't really for me. they're an intriguing little press though! i'm always tempted whenever i see one of the books!

  2. Obscurity doesn't always = excellence does it, Marie? I hear you. I'd be curious to know which titles didn't wow you.

    I got more into the press when I discovered that they'd published, as one of their rare regular sized volumes, a novel by one of my English professors at Chapman U., Martin Nakell's Two Fields That Face and Mirror Each Other.

    Since then, I've not encountered very many in my book hunting rounds (which have unfortunately waned dramatically of late) but I've never passed on a one I've met sitting all lonesome by itself, these lonely GIs, surrounded by ubiquitous entourages of Vikings and Vintages and Penguins and Pantheons, on that rare bookstore shelf hip enough to stock them.


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