Ly Seppel & Andres Ehin
translated by Ilmar Lehtpere
By turns surreal, political, folkloric and rootedly domestic, Shortening the Candle’s Wick is a window into the imaginative world of a poetic relationship.
For over forty years, husband and wife Andres Ehin and Ly Seppel lived together in Estonia writing poetry. Ehin’s style is that of the surrealist – “a connector of the unconnectable” – whilst Seppel is a poet of the fleeting moment, the glance of language across it.
Translator Ilmar Lehtpere has compiled a selection of translations in the form of a poetic dialogue between husband and wife, incorporating larger discussions of poet and language, nation and self.
New Openings in Literary Art
A magazine of innovative new writing, including fiction and essays from: Diane Williams, Kathryn Scanlan, Eley Williams, Gordon Lish, David Hayden, Laura Ellen Joyce, Greg Mulcahy, Kimberly King Parsons, Jason Schwartz, Sam Lipsyte, Evan Lavender-Smith, Carrie Cooperider, Ashton Politanoff, Grant Maierhofer, Hob Broun & Scott Esposito.
In lean, lyrical prose – reminiscent of the work of J.M. Coetzee and Cormac McCarthy – Zimbabwean writer Ian Holding delivers a mesmerising coming-of-age tale of guilt and responsibility set within the fault-lines of modern Africa.
Dark, comedic and breathtakingly poetic, this is the debut short story collection from a remarkably assured literary artist.
Comprising personal essays, fiction and art criticism, this is a merciless yet hilarious satire of the middle classes.
Tom Wolfe coined the term ‘double-tracker’ as a way of describing the duplicitous character of the successful artist: to double-track is to be both bohemian and establishment, rich and poor, an ingénue and an initiate of high-culture. Today, double-tracking is a full-blown commonplace of the middle-classes. From pink-washing to poverty chic, it enables the privileged to see themselves as they would like to be seen, allowing those with the financial resources the cultural benefits of leaning left with the economic benefits of leaning right.
"Closer to a snarling rant than a work of fiction... reads like the freewheeling wordplay of a mad person" – TLS
"These are stories for the neurotic state of our times, stories for insomnia, stories for those who wake in discontent. There will never be another like Gordon Lish." – Berfrois
"Lish is still our Joyce, our Beckett, our most true modernist. Buy! Read! Listen up!" – Kirkus
"A writer of extraordinary vision, a tireless innovator." – Electric Literature
"It's the voice, the force of the language that compels us to read Lish." – Biblioklept
"The US's answer to Samuel Beckett and Thomas Bernhard." – The Guardian
At once personal and hauntingly universal, Extravagant Stranger is the compelling memoir of self-professed ‘global scalliwag’ Daniel Roy Connelly – former diplomat, theatre director, Shakespeare scholar and conscience-stricken father.
Laced with international intrigue and hilarious moments of well-aimed self-scrutiny, here is a book – like the life it relates – truly without comparison.
Launch at Housmans, London, on 13 July with special guest Luke Kennard
"It’s an open secret that David Hayden is one of the most interesting short story writers around. Why it’s taken this long for his first collection to be published is beyond me but I, along with anyone with even the vaguest interest in looking at modernism anew, will be queuing up for a copy." – Eimear McBride
"Quietly innovative, subtle of tone, full of feeling – this is a superb debut" – Kevin Barry
"One of the most startlingly brilliant and original debuts I've ever read. Hayden is one hell of a talent." – David Collard
"Very, very fine fictions, which captivate and seduce the reader ... Beautiful, luminous, and written with poetic economy and precision." – David Winters
"An absolute triumph" – SAM LIPSYTE
Relentless, urgent and above all musical, this expertly crafted début novel recasts the tragic story of the failed Narváez expedition – a calamitous attempt to establish Spanish colonies along the Gulf Coast – in bracing, beautiful language. A timely narrative of botched colonialism, The Way of Florida radically reimagines the parameters and responsibilities of the historical novel.
Haunting in their tone, brilliant in their images – very like fantastic presences moving across glass – the twenty-one fictions in this startling collection seem both inexplicably familiar and like no writing we have seen before.
A masterclass in minimalist fiction, the opening story of this exquisite book leads us through a kaleidoscopic series of thoughts and memories around the act of writing a letter. Another, an intricately structured document of documents – household inventories, daily calendars, property deeds – suggests the reality overflowing these mundane markers of our lives. Yet another traces the histories of five artifacts, while at the same time slyly assembling five miniature biographical portraits.
A German Picturesque was first published in 1998 by Alfred A. Knopf. Jason Schwartz is also the author of John the Posthumous. His work has appeared in Conjunctions, Diaphanes, Five Points, Funhouse, and The White Review. He lives in Florida.
illustrations by Alice-Andrea Ewing
Submerged by the rising waters of the Danube after the construction of the Iron Gates Dam between former Yugoslavia and Romania in the early 1970s, the island of Ada Kaleh is no more.
This two-part poem, Ada Kaleh, anxiously unfolds and examines its own landscape of erasures and removals. It is a document of what floods in when you try to remember what you really need to, but can’t. Through collages of voice, persona and place, it is a poem that inhabits an eerie whimsy of amnesia and a violent compulsiveness of memory.
The particular collapses into the universal, the individual into the collective, and back again. Have we just been dumped by email? Or are we in bed with William Burroughs? Are we one of Tito’s town-planners? Or are we longing for some obscure reconciliation? ‘Hello you…’
64pp, limited edition
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We are thrilled to announce the forthcoming list of titles to be published by Little Island Press in 2018.
Hope was expressed that books could be found in which directions back out to life, of this kind, could be discovered. I thought of books that might suit this purpose — too many books — and then, much later, I thought of more books.
One morning in May, I stepped into the shower a balanced man. Ten minutes later, I was on my knees, cracked and weeping on a rubber mat. I cannot account for this on a second-by-second basis, the scene remains too fuzzy, beyond description.
New short fiction by Kathryn Scanlan, whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in NOON, Fence, The Collagist, Two Serious Ladies, Pastelegram, The Iowa Review, and Egress. She lives in Los Angeles.
The year ahead in books by independent publishers and presses
An innovative writer, critic, performer and bon vivant extraordinaire, Hartmann helped to introduce Japanese poetic forms to the English literary tradition, championed photography as an art form, conducted ‘concerts’ with smells instead of sounds, and drank riotously with everyone from the Symbolist poets of Paris to the Bohemians of Greenwich Village to the movie stars of Hollywood.
In later life he was a publisher’s reader and literary advisor for Jonathan Cape, where he was an early and ebullient proponent of Ted Hughes, Arthur Koestler, Stevie Smith, John Betjeman, John Fowles, Vladimir Nabokov, Alan Paton and Ian Fleming. (No Plomer, no Bond.)
It is high time Lola Ridge was recognized by thousands of women who are triumphantly following in her footsteps today, most of them without even knowing of this interesting, in some ways tragic precursor to whose life and work we all should feel gratefully indebted – Anne Stevenson
Moore’s poetry relies on his keen observation of his subjects and his tone as he describes them: he is focused but relaxed, clinical in his balance between intimacy and distance. Technically the key to his work, I think, is his perpetual struggle with form, the acceptance of the confined fourteen-line space and then the simultaneous way in which he perverts it or rebels against it.