Tag Archives: Japanese Poetry

Why Gift Edition?

10 Nov

the thousand marvels of every moment
a tanka collection
by pat nolan

Fall 2018, ISBN 9780984031078, 7×5 inches, 124 pages, $16

~The Gift Edition~

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(offer good through December 31, 2018)

 

Facing the thousand marvels

of every moment

nothing comes to mind

I pick up the broom

to collect my thoughts

 

Why “Gift” Edition?

As a gift the thousand marvels of every moment is ephemeral and accessible, as undemanding as a tweet yet profound and universal as a meme, not only clever and entertaining but thought provoking as well. At a sleek 7×5 inches, a little larger than a smart phone, it fits easily in the hand like an oversize postcard, but as a book it is ultimately “flippable,” meaning that it is as easy to browse as scrolling through social media.  Its resonant design with trompe l’oeil stitching and decorative endpapers bestows on the book-as-gift a complimentary esthetic that is painless, instant, and memorable—as gifts should be.  An extra incentive for earth conscious gift purchasing is that the text of the thousand marvels of every moment is printed on 100% PCW (post consumer waste) at a printing plant in Minnesota operating on wind power.  Get one for yourself, buy one for a friend.

 

On the phone

outside a butterfly settles

on a leaf

her voice light

shimmering on thin wings

 

Tanka is the modern name for a short poem known throughout the history of Japanese literature as a waka.  The short poems of the thousand marvels of every moment are composed of five lines.  The first stanza balances on the second, sometimes precariously, to pose a distinguishing match. The break between stanzas acts as a gap for synaptic sparks to jump. It also emphasizes its call and response origins serving as a binary exchange of verbal energy.  The two last lines in these poems tend to resolve them either as parallel breaths or as a single run-on semantic declaration.

 

The part of myself

I tend to deny leaks out

the tip of this pen

please say “I love you”

with a neon sign

 

Pat Nolan has long been an avid student of Asian culture, particularly Japanese and Chinese poetry. He published Poetry For Sale (2015), a selection of haikai no renga (Japanese linked verse) written with a number of poets including Maureen Owen, Keith Kumasen Abbott, Gloria Frym, Steven Lavoie, and Sandy Berrigan.  His Chinese themed poems were published as Exile In Paradise in 2017. The poems of the thousand marvels of every moment have appeared in a variety of poetry magazines as well as in collections of privately issued handmade limited editions of tanka that include Thin Wings (2004), Untouched By Rain (2005), and Carved In Stone (2013).  One notable exception is the beautifully realized Cloud Scatter (1994) in an exquisite letterpress edition of 160 copies from Jerry Reddan’s Tangram Press.  Nolan is also the author of two novels, an online serial fiction, and numerous poetry books.  So Much—Handwritten Typewriter—Selected Poems Volume I, 1969-1989, was published in the spring of 2018.

 

Seconds whiled away

or willed away all the same

original instance

desire’s rhetorical question

“how do I get more?”

 

 


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The Thousand Marvels. . . . Free Shipping

17 Oct

the thousand marvels of every moment
a tanka collection
by pat nolan

Fall 2018, 124 pages, $16

Order Now * Get Free Shipping
(offer good through December 31, 2018)

One In A Thousand

Tanka is the modern name for a short poem known throughout the history of Japanese literature as a waka. The pre-modern word, waka, finds its source in ancient oral tradition of call and response agricultural chants as well as those accompanying communal efforts in indigenous Japanese villages.  In its lineated form, the tanka consists of five lines.  In its non-lineated form, the tanka has the syllabic rhythm or pattern of 5-7-5-7-7. 

The courtly love culture of medieval Japan adapted the folk tradition as the exchange of verse between courtiers requiring a cap or response to bring the poem to a subtle esoteric often erotic resolution. Eventually the practice transformed into a unified singular verse, the waka, a poem of two minds as the literary affectation of one mind.


The short poems of the thousand marvels of every moment are composed of five lines.  They also take into consideration the 5-7-5-7-7 patterns as a phonetic rhythm although they do not necessarily conform to the syllabic count.  The succinct directness required of the form lends itself to this rhythm. The first stanza balances on the second, sometimes precariously, to pose a distinguishing match. The break between stanzas acts as a kind of caesura, a gap for synaptic sparks to jump.  It also emphasizes its call and response origins serving as a binary exchange of verbal energy.  The two last lines in these poems tend to resolve them either as parallel breaths or as a single run-on semantic declaration.  Sometimes they function as a pedestal for the preceding stanza, the bass line for its melodic pretext, sometimes as a bowl or receptacle to contain the original intent, or as a decorative garnish to the entrée (think California cuisine), and sometimes at its most basic, the response to the call.


I hesitate to name the poems in this collection tanka as that would presume the mastery of a complicated set of rules and conditions.  They do not observe many of the accepted tanka conventions although they do seek a synthesis and accommodation brought about by translation into a radically different language and culture.  The poems actually owe their method more to the intricate multi-voiced play of a related Japanese verse form, haikai no renga, also known as renku or linked verse.  That similarity is especially true in the relationship between stanzas or the rhythms of 5-7-5 -7-7.  There is, in fact, a term for a linked poem composed of only two stanzas, tanrenga.  As accurate as that may be I am uncomfortable with the label. Tanku, a word of my own devising, would seem to accommodate the Japanese nomenclature (haiku, hokku, renku) but still doesn’t fit my sense of the poems.  Ultimately I find myself preferring tanka as the logical and sentimental favorite of what this type of poem might be called. I do so well aware that the designation is a borrowed one.

(from the introduction to the thousand marvels of every moment)


 

from the thousand marvels of every moment

Fall, 2018, the thousand marvels of every moment

23 Sep

the thousand marvels of every moment
a tanka collection
by pat nolan

Fall 2018, approx 100 pages, $16

Pre-orders now being accepted

 

Tanka is the modern name for a short poem known throughout the history of Japanese literature as a “waka.” The pre-modern word, “waka”, finds it source in the ancient oral tradition of call and response planting and harvesting songs as well as those accompanying communal efforts in indigenous Japanese villages.  In its lineated form, the tanka consists of five lines.  In its non-lineated form, the tanka has the syllabic rhythm or pattern of 5-7-5-7-7.  The short poems of the thousand marvels of every moment are composed of five lines.  They also take into consideration the rhythmic patterns of 5-7-5-7-7 although they do not necessarily conform to the syllabic count.  The poems in this collection also do not observe many of the accepted tanka conventions but seek a synthesis and accommodation brought about by translation into a radically different language and culture. 

from One In A Thousand

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So Much, Selected Poem, 1969-1989
“Descriptions of nature so translucent we can only marvel how he weaves us into them, onward, around that eternal share of misfortune, bitter realization, and expectations gone wrong. This is Nolan’s secret power.  He engages us in magical transformation and will not let us look away.”
—Maureen Owen, author of Erosion’s Pull and Edges of Water

 

Exile In Paradise
“Reading these poems, I feel like I’m walking down a village lane somewhere in China, beyond the reach of the emperor’s minions, and every door I walk by, someone invites me in for a cup of wine. At this rate, I don’t think I’ll ever make it out of here, and why should I?”
—Bill Porter (Red Pine), translator, author of Finding Them Gone: Visiting China’s Poets from the Past

 

Poetry For Sale
Poetry For Sale is a fantastic collection.  Anyone interested in the interaction between Japanese and English poetry needs this book.  And anyone interested in renga should definitely get it.  It is an immensely pleasing collection: entertaining, surprising, sometimes sharp and witty, sometimes introspective, sometimes descriptive, the renga unfold with great skill and elegance.”
 —Jim Wilson,  author of Microcosmos, The Art Of The Solo Renga (Sebastopol, 2014)

 

Your Name Here
“The poems glow with insight and wit as they simply monitor the flow of a mind steeped in Chinese poetry, bebop, the Russian River, the beats, the birds, Heraclitus. . . .  [Nolan] in his own words, is an alphabet male.  And despite the breadth of his learning and thought, is always just talking from right here.  It’s a hell of a book.”
—Eric Johnson, poet and master printer at Iota Press

 

Hello Life
“Reading Gail King has always been one of my great poetry pleasures. Her inimitable voice narrates the world with humor and tenderness, a world of beauty and occasional sorrow. Her work has healing effects.”
—Andrei Codrescu, NPR commentator and author of So Recently Rent A World

 

 

The Last Resort
“Pat Nolan’s The Last Resort puts his gun in the right hands–a woman’s–with authority and harmful intent.  Get ready to hit the deck!”
Barry Gifford, author of Imagining Paradise and Wild At Heart

 

 

On The Road To Las Cruces
On the Road to Las Cruces takes us on a twilight journey through frontier history.  Nolan’s adroit and stylish prose intertwines death, betrayal, greed and conspiracy as each claims its victims.”
Keith Abbott, author of Downstream From Trout Fishing In America

 

 


 

 

Holiday Bargains

5 Dec

Happy 2018

Now Available from

Nualláin House, Publishers

Purchase two or more titles
and get free shipping
anywhere in the US
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Also available through our partnership with
Bamboo Leaf Studio
Linoleum Block Prints
from the Smoking Poets series

and the Faux Koan series by Pat Nolan

Order two or more prints
get free shipping
and receive a bonus broadside of
the limited edition
Dylan Thomas print accompanied by Pat Nolan’s
Advice To A Young Poet
Free!!

 

Exile In Paradise FREE SHIPPING

27 Oct

Praise for Exile In Paradise

“Nolan has given Solitude, itself, a voice in this rich lyric of nature.  A luminosity of flickering bursts pause and magnify now moments of being alive.  His quotidian soaks us with its presence.  His lines trace the air.”
—Maureen Owen, author of Erosion’s Pull and Edges of Water

“Reading these poems, I feel like I’m walking down a village lane somewhere in China, beyond the reach of the emperor’s minions, and every door I walk by, someone invites me in for a cup of wine. At this rate, I don’t think I’ll ever make it out of here, and why should I?”
—Bill Porter (Red Pine), translator, author of Finding Them Gone: Visiting China’s Poets from the Past


 

The poems of Exile In Paradise are derived from a lifelong appreciation of classical Chinese poetry. This selection by Pat Nolan marks an almost fifty year creative engagement with Asian literature in translation. Chinese poetry is image rich and largely dependent for its overall effect on the juxtaposition of these images in a discontinuous thread that is not unlike the successive frames of a film. Each of the poems finds its origin in a line translated from an ancient Chinese poet. Although removed by degrees of separation from the originals in time and language, their impulse remains the same: to call up the perceptual as a song of celebration in sacred engagement with the world.

Pat Nolan has lived in silent cunning exile along the Russian River in Northern California for over forty years.  His poetry, prose and translations have appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies in North America, Europe and Asia.  He has worked as a bartender, rock band manager, trail crew grunt, radio DJ, janitor, preschool teacher, and emergency dispatcher.  The author of three novels and over a dozen poetry books, he is also publisher of Nualláin House, Publishers and maintains this literary blog.


Failed in Letters Happy in Life

“Cherishing my ineptness I’m carefree to the end”
enjoying a little peace cup of herb tea cold
attentive to the sound of the eaves overflowing
after a rush of late winter rain passes through
where I have gone wrong fills many notebooks
file cabinets bulging with personal hyperbole
here mistake after mistake accumulates like dust
documents of my timeless imperfection


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Exile In Paradise
November, 2017
$16.00~paper~100 pages~6×9~ISBN 978-0-9840310-5-4

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ontheroadfront300ON THE ROAD TO LAS CRUCES; Being A Novel Account of The Last Day In The Life of A Legendary Western Lawman
by Pat Nolan

 Pat Nolan’s first published novel, On The Road To Last Cruces; Being A Novel Account of The Last Day In The Life of A Legendary Western Lawman is the story of youthful bravado and an old man’s regret, and as much a dusty tale of buffalo hunts and shoot-outs as a politically driven “whodunit.”  November 2011 ~ 154 pages

 

THE LAST RESORT
A Lee Malone Adventure
by Pat Nolan

Pat Nolan has written a fast paced, tongue-in-cheek, pun filled comedy of errors, misunderstandings, and faux intuition in the mode of a 1930’s pulp thriller.  Instead of the typical splinter-jawed, broken nosed, tobacco breathed tough guy hero, Nolan upends the stereotype by introducing a gorgeous internationally famous former fashion model whose super power is her beauty.
August 2012~ 212 pages

 

 

HELLO LIFE
Poems by Gail King 

The poems of Hello Life achieve their freshness in the particularity of experience. The poet surrenders herself to the moment and tenders that subtle cognition as a delighted welcome to life. The ease of her expression in dealing with the everyday communicates an uncommon wisdom. The poems present, through playful understatement and sly humor, the immediacy of spontaneous impressions.
December 2013  ~  64 pages

 

 

 

Your Name Here
New Poems
by Pat Nolan 

The poems in Your Name Here revolve around that quantum axis with seemingly random discontinuities that do not pin down meaning but are left to mean themselves. Nolan’s poetry enacts a sub-vocal monologue that is like the murmur of cosmic background radiation, noticeable only in its cessation or as pauses when the mind registers the sum of discrete moments in an instant.  November 2014 ~ 80 pages

 

Poetry For Sale
Haikai no Renga (Linked Poetry)

Introduction by Pat Nolan
The eleven haikai no renga included in Poetry For Sale were written over period of nearly thirty years by Pat Nolan and his renku collaborators, Keith Kumasen Abbott, Sandy Berrigan, Gloria Frym, Steven Lavoie, Joen Eshima Moore, Maureen Owen, Michael Sowl, and John Veglia.  In these pages haikai no renga is synthesized as a brief, highly suggestive, well spoken, maddeningly ambiguous, read-between-the-lines kind of poetry tuned to a common understanding.  October 2015 ~ 152 pages

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