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The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen
Philip Whalen; Michael Rothenberg, ed.; Gary Snyder, fwd.; Leslie Scalapino, intro.

Wesleyan Poetry Series

2007 • 932 pp. 92 doodles 6 x 9"

$55.00 Hardcover, 978-0-8195-6859-5

“Rothenberg has done an exemplary job with The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen…. He includes a short biography of the poet, as well as an extensive bibliography, various of Whalen’s... [continued in Reviews below]”—Lewis MacAdams, Los Angeles Times

The collected work of a legendary San Francisco Renaissance and Beat poet

One of the most path-breaking and creatively radical poets of the San Francisco Renaissance, Philip Whalen was part of the 1955 Six Gallery reading where the West Coast Beat movement famously began. Working alongside Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, and Jack Kerouac, Whalen developed a conversational and visually unorthodox style that is unique in contemporary poetry. His lifelong engagement with the impermanent and sensuous, concerns deepened by his commitment to Zen Buddhism, are on rich display here, along with his warm humor and original illustrations. This Collected Poems rightfully places Whalen among the foremost poets of his time, offering readers a truly major body of American poetic work.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“Rothenberg has done an exemplary job with The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen…. He includes a short biography of the poet, as well as an extensive bibliography, various of Whalen’s own prefaces, (Gary) Snyder’s astute and heartfelt foreword and a thoughtful essay by poet Leslie Scalapino. He’s even reproduced the tables of contents of Whalen’s original collections."—Lewis MacAdams, Los Angeles Times

“This is a beautiful book.”—Jordan Davis, The Nation

“Presenting some of the most significant poetry of the postwar era, The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen should boost Whalen’s cultural status to the level of recognition he deserves, for it reveals an acute introspective power unequaled in the writing of the period.”—Dale Smith, Rain Taxi

“Philip Whalen is a great American poet. Some--too few--readers have known this since the mid 1950s, when his poems first appeared in little magazines and small-press books. In publishing The Collected Poems of Philip Whalen, Wesleyan gives the world at large this incomparable poet, and major literary event. …(Y)ou will enjoy Whalen’s poems, and you may come to love them.”—William Corbett, The Boston Phoenix

“Rothenberg’s editorial efforts with Wesleyan University Press resulted in the astonishing and delightful Collected Poems of Phillip Whalen, establishing record of poetic gesture, visual performance, and cultural engagement in a large and playful volume comprising a master poet’s lifework.”Dale Smith, In Review

“Philip Whalen is one of the great but still largely unrecognized sources of our literature. This volume provides the opportunity to read all his published poems in the order of their writing. A masterpiece of the jump-start collected mind!”
—Clark Coolidge, author of The Crystal Text

“This definitive volume reveals the pure ease of an ambling and mighty mind. Whalen is ever the erudite teacher, reminding one, above all, to ‘banish shoddy thinking’! This book should be the cornerstone of every poet's library.”—Joanne Kyger, author of About Now: Collected Poems

Author Photo

PHILIP WHALEN (1923–2002) was an influential Beat poet and the author of dozens of books of novels and poetry, including On Bear’s Head, The Diamond Noodle, and Overtime. MICHAEL ROTHENBERG is one of the literary executors of Whalen’s estate, and the editor of Also the editor of major volumes of selected poetry by Philip Whalen, Joanne Kyger, David Meltzer, and Edward Dorn, he lives north of San Francisco.

This project is supported in part by an award from
National Endowment for the Arts

Mon, 18 Jun 2018 11:55:33 -0500