MAL ARME represents the third stage of a series of Oulipian books that started with LETTER DROP (2000), continued with MI SING (Book Thug 2004), and will conclude with The Occasional Troubadour (forthcoming 2010). The first three volumes each consist of 26 Lipograms, lettered A thru Z, wherein the A poems have no As, the B poems have no Bs, etc. The first book excavated an assortment of texts ranging from the 1928 edition (the 9th) of Sir Morell MacKenzie’s Hygiene of the Vocal Organs to such fictions as Tom Swift and His House on Wheels. MI SING reverts to a single text for its sources and inspiration: Marcel Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past. The current text plays close attention to the prose writings of Stéphane Mallarmé in translation. The fourth continues its author’s fascination with all things French by roaming through that country’s southeast regions through a two volume study published in 1898 called The Troubadours at Home.
Praise for MAL ARME:
“Wake up readers of verse! MAL ARME by Victor Coleman has arrived! More Dorn than Adorno! Intellectual Hat and Bawdy Haus Heart!—the Stompin’ Tom of PostModern kanadian poetry, a true man of the people. Coleman is the great vaudevillian, the champion of Spicer’s commitment to the poem, the one we should be listening to more of. His work is profound and most poets and languagers ‘would turn to dust with envy’ had they such insights with so little interference. He is arguably the best poet we have now. Read him widely and deeply.” — Andrew Whiteman
Victor Coleman is the author of numerous books of poetry, starting with the 1964 publication of From Erik Satie’s Notes to the Music, through CORRECTIONS (1985), LAPSED WASP (1994), and ICON TACT (2006). He was a founding editor of both Coach House Press (in 1965) and Coach House Books (in 1997) and has laboured as a film programmer, director of an artist run centre, and co-director and programmer for a musical performance centre, all in Toronto. He currently toils as a free-lance editor and a part-time cook at a downtown social service facility. Sometime in 2009 the University of California Press will release his (and Michael Boughn’s) edit of Robert Duncan’s The H.D. Book.