A classic book of poetics by a major Beat Generation poet, published in a beautiful gift edition.
"The poem is perhaps the highest verbal form of communication. It illuminates and it conceals. It is as precise and as vague as a mirror."—David Meltzer, Two-Way Mirror
Two-Way Mirror is a classic book of poetics by Beat Generation poet David Meltzer. Written in short remarks, autobiographical anecdotes, and inspirational quotations drawn from philosophical, ethnographic, and literary sources, Two-Way Mirror is both a nondidactic guide to the art Meltzer has devoted his life to, and a literary pleasure in itself. Attractively bound and printed in a deluxe gift edition, and featuring Meltzer's collection of found artwork collaged from thrift-store grammar books, this new and expanded edition retains the charm of the original while updating it for the present day.
Building upon the version he self-published in 1977, Meltzer has written additional material that considers the effect of technological developments since the book's publication, as well as an afterword in which he reflects on the history of the volume, its inception and its usefulness. With its various writing prompts, Two-Way Mirror has proven to be both inspirational and practical, a teaching tool and a guide to creativity that makes the perfect gift for poets at any stage of development.
Praise for Two-Way Mirror:
"David Meltzer had set out, when he was very young, to write a long poem called The History of Everything, an ambition that his later poetry brought ever closer to fulfillment. Here, in Two-Way Mirror, he shows us the underpinnings for such an enterprise: a brilliant & wise work as rich in insights & discoveries today as when it was first published in 1977. I know of no better amalgam of poetry & poetics & no better introduction to the ways in which poetry can emerge for us & lead us beyond ourselves & toward our own fulfillments. Meltzer's grace of mind & the life of poetry that surrounds it make the case complete."––Jerome Rothenberg
"A great book of learning from a lifetime's thoughts of the poem. Ramble, scribble, tickle, lightbulb! Timely and highly worthwhile."—Clark Coolidge
Praise for David Meltzer:
"One of the greats of post-World War Two San Francisco poets and musicians. He brought music to poetry and poetry to music!"––Lawrence Ferlinghetti
"David Meltzer is a hidden adept, one of the secret treasures on our planet. Great poet, musician, comic, mystic unsurpassed, performer with few peers. His ear and his erudiation are fine-tuned and precise. A kind of bop-perfection pervades his work."––Diane di Prima
About the Author:
David Meltzer is a poet, novelist, editor, and musician. He has edited many anthologies, including SF Beat: Talking with the Poets. His most recent book is When I Was a Poet, Number 60 in the City Lights Pocket Poets Series. Lawrence Ferlinghetti has called him "one of the greats of post-World War Two San Francisco poets and musicians."