Illuminations, Arthur Rimbaud

September 21, 2017 11:07 pm by Crocodile


by Arthur Rimbaud

Honestly I probably picked this up because it looks like an issue of Cometbus. Used to catch a lot of punk flyers that looked kind of like this- an old zoomed-in photo, white and black text. People used to have their own special ways of writing on top of the photo and keeping it fairly legible- it’s easy when you have large fields of white or black, but when it’s a busier picture like this one you need technique. Ray Johnson did this cover, and it’s a little hard to read but in this case I think that works for the design rather than against. If you wanted it more legible here’s my technique: you get your photo the way you like it, and then in black you write the band’s name kind of big and blurry. invert the image (black to white), and fill in the name (now white) in black, more crisply, leaving a border. Invert again, and you’re done. Piece of cake.

we, the punks, are out tonight


I like Ray Johnson but I also recognize that if he was alive today and in my circle I’d probably think he was kind of a pain in the ass. Case in point: signing your name in the top right corner of a book you designed the cover for. Pros don’t do this, Ray! Doesn’t exude confidence. Quite the opposite in fact! A: No one signs the covers; B: No one signs anything in the top right, that’s unreasonable.


Love it they do the translations face to face with the original. I don’t speak french but it’s nice to try and pick it out with the answers right there. Or not “the answers” but someone’s answers anyway. Louise Varese’s answers. Also this way you can quote a passage in the original, that never fails to impress. Picture me bowing out of a situation because it’s trop épineuse pour mon grand caractère. Swish.

new directions
I had breakfast with some poets the other day and kept giggling every time they said “New Directions”, they couldn’t figure out why. I thought hyperfocus on words and their high/low disjunct was a poet’s bread and butter but I guess not. Or not all the time anyway.


I got this book for $2 on account of the spine is torn, and I left the sticker on because it pops. Color sells. Kind of looks like a colorful band aid, makes the kid look tough, both in the “gets in fights” way and in the “not trying to hide” way (like a poison toad or flamboyant cuttlefish). see also Nelly:

I didn’t read this entire book but I do pick it up from time to time and read selections, and like all books of poetry in the collection, it spent a season in the WC.



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