A note on Reality Street from Ken Edwards

The two presses recognised a common interest in publishing the poetry of what I once termed the “parallel tradition”: its various formations in the UK being the British Poetry Revival (Eric Mottram’s term), the Cambridge diaspora, and what has sometimes been called “linguistically innovative” poetry – all overlapping categories. There was also a common interest in post-New American Poetry, Language Writing and related North American fields, as well as adventurous poetry in other English-speaking regions and from other languages and cultures.

Read more HERE

Allen Fisher’s Gravity out now in full from Reality Street

Allen Fisher and Bill Griffiths books are Reality Street’s final titles

From 1982 to 2005 Allen Fisher’s major work (following his previous project of the 1970s,PLACE, published in its entirety by Reality Street in 2005) was a sequence of poems that went by the overall title Gravity as a consequence of shape. Taking their titles from an alphabetical list of jazz dances, and using scientific vocabulary and collage practices – erudite, funny and expansive – they were published in several stages over the years.

Now – as with PLACE – Reality Street is publishing the entire sequence in one sumptuous paperback edition.

Charles Bernstein has described this as “a masterful work in the project of undoing mastery”.

The book is on general sale from today, 27 June. Supporter subscribers in the UK should have received their copy by now. Supporter subscribers in the rest of the world – please be patient, your copy will be on its way in the next couple of weeks.

Bill Griffiths’ Collected Poems Volume 3 was published in May. All subscribers should now have their copies.

Together, these two titles by poets we have long championed bring the Reality Street project to a fitting conclusion. The press was launched in 1993 by Ken Edwards and Wendy Mulford, and has been run for the past 18 years by Ken Edwards, who will now devote more of his time to his own writing. All current titles will be kept in print for the foreseeable future, but no new ones are planned. Many thanks for your support of and interest in the press over the years.


Reality Street Live

Wednesday, 19 February 2014, 19:30 until 22:00. Electric Palace, 39a High Street, Hastings, East Sussex, TN34 3ER.

Philip Terry – A reading by the author of tapestry, an extraordinary novel retelling the story of the Norman Conquest from the point of view of the Bayeux Tapestry’s English embroiderers. Tapestry was shortlisted for the inaugural 2013 Goldsmiths Prize for fiction.

Ken Edwards – The publisher of Reality Street reads from his collection of fictions Down With Beauty and from Bardo, a reimagining of the Tibetan Book of the Dead set in Hastings.

Elaine Edwards – Co-founder with Ken Edwards of local band The Moors, Elaine will perform on flute and accordion.

Philip Terry and Ken Edwards book launches

REALITY STREET launches two books in London next week:

PHILIP TERRY: tapestry
Taking as its starting point marginal images in the Bayeux Tapestry, which have been left largely unexplained by historians, Terry retells the story of the Norman Conquest from the point of view of the tapestry’s English embroiderers. Combining magic realism and Oulipian techniques, this is a tour de force of narrative and language.
KEN EDWARDS: Down With Beauty
A series of linked dialogues, dramatic monologues and short fictions exploring the themes of exile, the aftermath of war, paranoia, improvised music and nothingness. The collection is completed with the full text of Nostalgia for Unknown Cities, previously published separately.
Both authors will read from their books.
21st May, At the Blue Bus, 7.30pm at The Lamb (in the upstairs room), 94 Lamb’s Conduit Street, London WC1, £5/£3 conc
The books will be on sale at the special launch price of £10 each.

The Alchemist’s Mind

A book of narrative prose by poets.

An anthology edited by David Miller in collaboration with Ken Edwards. Contributors are: Barbara Guest, Lee Harwood, Ian Robinson, Rosmarie Waldrop, Robert Sheppard, Bernadette Mayer, Paul Buck, Lyn Hejinian, M J Weller, Brian Marley, Johan de Wit, John Levy, Vahni Capildeo, Paul Haines, Lawrence Fixel, Robert Lax, Fanny Howe, David Miller, Keith Waldrop, Giles Goodland, bpNichol, David Rattray, Guy Birchard, Will Petersen, Tom Lowenstein, Kristin Prevallet, Stephen Watts, Daphne Marlatt. More at the Reality Street site.

The Blue Bus: 20th March

The Blue Bus is pleased to present a poetry event featuring Ken Edwards and John Gibbens, with music by Ken White and David Miller, on Tuesday 20th March, from 7.30 at The Lamb (in the upstairs room), 94 Lamb’s Conduit Street, London WC1. This is the sixty-first event in THE BLUE BUS series. Admissions: £5 / £3 (concessions).

Ken Edwards’ books include the poetry collections Good Science (Roof Books, 1992), eight + six (Reality Street, 2003), No Public Language: Selected Poems 1975-95 (Shearsman Books, 2006), Bird Migration in the 21st Century (Spectacular Diseases, 2006), Songbook (Shearsman Books, 2009), the novel Futures (Reality Street, 1998) and the prose works Nostalgia for Unknown Cities (Reality Street, 2007) and Bardo (Knives Forks & Spoons Press, 2011). A book of short narratives, Down With Beauty, awaits publication. He has been editor/publisher of the small press Reality Street since 1993. He lives in Hastings, where he plays bass guitar and sings with The Moors, a band he co-founded with Elaine Edwards.

David Miller was born in Melbourne (Australia) in 1950, and has lived in London since 1972. His more recent publications include The Waters of Marah (Shearsman Books, 2005), The Dorothy and Benno Stories (Reality Street Editions, 2005), and In the Shop of Nothing: New and Selected Poems (Harbor Mountain Press, 2007). Spiritual Letters (Series 1-5) appeared from Chax Press in Tucson in 2011, and a double CD recording of David Miller reading this same work should be out from LARYNX (London) in time for this event. Black, Grey and White: A Book of Visual Sonnets came out from Veer Books in late 2011. He is a clarinettist who has performed solo, in duets with Ken White and others, and in The Mind Shop, and he is a member of the Frog Peak Music collective.

Ken White is a jazz guitarist from Melbourne, Australia, who has performed widely in his native country, as well as in London with David Miller, and has recorded with the vocalists Suzie Dickinson and Patsy O’Neill. He has composed and recorded music for independent films. He is also a painter, who has had many exhibitions in Australia. Kater Murr’s Press published his Drawings for Music in 2005.

John Gibbens was born in the Wirral and grew up in West Germany and West Cumbria. He’s lived in London since 1978, and currently earns his bread on ‘Fleet Street’. He won the Eric Gregory Award at the age of 21. Collected Poems appeared from Touched Press in 2000. In 2005, the title poem of the Touched Press pamphlet Sand of the Thames won the Southwark Poet of the Year competition. A narrative poem, Orpheus Ascending, set in an alternative Britain of social inequity, repression and violent disorder, appeared from Smokestack Books in March 2012 (available from Amazon.co.uk). The Nightingale’s Code, his acclaimed “poetic study of Bob Dylan” was published by Touched in October 2001. Covenant, a set of one-act plays which he also acted in, was produced at the Finborough Theatre in London in 1989 (with Francesca Howell, movement directed by Rosemary Lee, stage deisgn by Emma Withers). He formed The Children with Armorel Weston in the early Nineties and their first CD, Play, was released in 1999. There have been six further albums, the latest being In Memory of Grace (2011). He also plays with and the poet and clarinettist David Miller (and Armorel Weston) in The Mind Shop.

We also hope to launch two CD recordings from LARYNX at this event: Poems by Christopher Gutkind and Spiritual Letters (Series 1-5) by David Miller. There will be a brief reading by David Miller.

Forthcoming events will include Eléna Rivera, Scott Thurston and Melissa Buckheit (17th April), Marcus Slease, Lesley McKenna and Fran Lock (15th May) and D S Marriott and Robert Sheppard (19th June).

Reality Street Supporter Scheme

For £40 (UK/Europe) or £50 (outside Europe), you will receive copies of all four Reality Street books published during the year. Your name will also be listed in the back of the books ( and on relevant publicity material, unless you prefer to remain anonymous. Books scheduled for 2012 are:

  • Paul Brown: Cabin in the Mountains
  • David Miller (ed.): The Alchemist’s Mind
  • Maggie O’Sullivan: Waterfalls
  • Sean Pemberton: White

More details at the Reality Street site.


Issue 2 of VLAK: Contemporary Poetics & the Arts is now available. VLAK 2 is edited by Louis Armand, Edmund Berrigan, Carol Watts, Stephan Delbos, David Vichnar, Jane Lewty & Ali Alizadeh. It includes work by Other Room readers Steve McCaffery, Adrian Clarke, Ken Edwards and Robert Sheppard and many others.

Reality Street at the Small Publishers’ Fair

REALITY STREET will be at the annual Small Publishers Fair  in November over the weekend of Friday 11th-Saturday 12th November. It takes place in the Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL.

Reality Street will be featuring the three new books in the Narrative  Series that are being launched this autumn:

  • Dwelling by Richard Makin
  • Gero Nimo by Johan de Wit
  • The Raft by Leopold Haas

On the Saturday, at 4pm, Richard Makin will launch his 672pp “anti-novel” Dwelling, and John Gilmore will (belatedly) launch his book  Head of a Man, which was published at the beginning of this year.

Crater Spring Event

Monday, May 16 · 7:30pm – 10:30pm

Location The Old Red Lion Pub, Kennington

This is the latest Crater seasonal event – Ken Edwards, Gareth Farmer, Gregorio Fontaine, Rob Holloway and Joseph Luna will showcase their wares in a free and easy poetry enviro. Turn right outside Kennington tube, it’s 100yds on your left. No charge, no dress code.

The Other Room 23 reviewed

Interesting discussions from Matt Dalby and Steve Waling

It was an ambitious programme this time. Derek Henderson read via live stream from Utah – and the other readers (Carrie Etter, Alec Finlay and Ken Edwards) were streamed out to the wider world. The venue was pretty packed and there were a number of new faces.

Derek Henderson reading from the recently released if p then q collection Thus & was the highlight of the evening for me. The collection is described as ‘a systematic erasure of Ted Berrigan’s 1964 collection The Sonnets.’

READ MORE at Santiago’s Dead Wasp

The last Other Room was a really terrific night – to think that it’s already got to three years is quite stupendous. Derek Henderson live-streamed from Utah was one of the highlights, as was seeing the poet and editor Carrie Etter reading from her Shearsman book, Divining for Starters. Ken Edwards was also good, as was Alec Finlay. It was an interesting evening that brought up some issues.