New York: James A. Carr & Robert A. Wilson, 1964. First trade edition. 8vo, 72 pp, bound in gilt-stamped blue cloth. Lacking the unprinted glassine jacket. With a wine label laid in.
This copy is inscribed by Wieners to Dave Haselwood on page 23, with the printed label from a bottle of Paul MAsson Rhine Castle wine carefully removed and laid in. The inscription occurs directly below the brief and enigmatic poem "The Pool of Light" -
"A shimmering fern leaf, 2 upraised em-/ blems of gold / lift an instant, trem-/ blings revolved. / O Switzerland, O Schon castle, o land across / the Rhine."
The label is bracked by embossed gold emblems above a pastoral view of the castle. We'd always been puzzled by this wistful but beautiful poem, but the presence of the label makes us think that the poem is a meditation on this label or one like it.
Wieners wasn't a stranger to Rhine castle wine. In "Poet Be Like God," by Kevin Killian and Lewis Ellingham, there is an account of "A Famous Evening", as Kyger termed it, when Wieners introduced Kyger to Tom Field and Michael Rumaker, who taught them how to make a proper martini of Rhine Castle wine and gin.
Haselwood printed Wiener's first book, the Hotel Wentley Poems, so named because Haselwood had loaned him his room at the Hotel Wentley where the book was written. A beautiful association linking Wiener's first and second books, and one which illuminates one of the best poems in the book.
Near fine with a faint 2" area of staining to the front board (from Rhine castle wine, we hope). Lacking the unprinted glassine jacket. Item #23242