[ Campbell, Carolee ] Tarn, Nathaniel. The Persephones. [Sherman Oaks]: Ninja Press. 2009.
“Tarn belongs to a secret lineage in modern poetry:…his poetry is a conjunction of eroticism, radical politics, Eastern philosophy and Western mysticism, world myth and the world’s arts, contemporary science, and precise descriptions of the natural world.”
“[ Tarn’s poetry ] redefines nature and art for human culture, bringing a genuine psychological and linguistic curiosity about the human mind.”
Nathaniel Tarn was born in Paris in 1928, studied at Cambridge, the London School of Economics, Yale, the University of Chicago, the Collége de France, and the Musée de l’Homme. He has published over ten volumes of poetry, the first in 1964.
In this publication Tarn explores the Greek myth of Persephones, the daughter of Zeus, ruler of the gods, and of Demeter, goddess of the harvest. Persephones’ abduction and removal to the underworld broke the heart and mind of her mother:
The cornbearer goes among men
as among shattering apes
herself as savage as a mother baboon
shrieking thru the mountains for her daughter…
Coupled with the striking verbal images of this poetry are Carolee Campbell’s own hand-painted folios, thus making this an edition of unique copies. The type is Van Dijck with Weiss Initials Series I for the display, each hand set and printed on dampened Domestic Etching paper. The folios are inserted into a goat parchment covering processed by hand at Pergamena in New York. The chemise is made from Asahi Japanese silken cloth and the slipcase from natural linen. Karen Skove Chu assisted in the binding.
The edition comprises eighty-five unique numbered copies and ten unique lettered copies hors commerce.
The book is signed by the artist and the poet.
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