Big Sky Number One
Edited by Bill Berkson. Contributions from Alice Notley, Allen Ginsberg, Ted Berrigan, Diane di Prima, Joe Brainard, Joanne Kyger, Philip Whalen, Kenward Elmslie, Robert Creeley, Clark Coolidge, et. al.
Bolinas: Big Sky, 1971. Large Octavo. Staplebound in illustrated paper wraps. Some minor scuffing to the front cover and mild rubbing along the slightly toned fold, light soiling on the text block. Unpaginated. First edition, inscribed by Bill Berkson to Gary Snyder, soliciting a future contribution. Very good.
Cover design by Greg Irons. The first of eleven issues put out between 1971 and 1978. According to Berkson, it all began "during a perceptible lull in adventurous poetry publishing. The previous year I had moved to Bolinas, California, from New York where my parting shot had been a single-issue compendium of art and literature called Best & Company. When I arrived, the literary community in Bolinas numbered fewer than a dozen people, mainly poets like Joanne Kyger who had been associated with the Spicer and Duncan circles in San Francisco, plus a couple of prior interlopers from New York, Tom Clark and Lewis Warsh. By 1971, our neighbors included David and Tina Meltzer, Lewis and Phoebe MacAdams, Robert Creeley and Bobbie Louise Hawkins, and, briefly, Philip Whalen. Joe Brainard’s Bolinas Journal was the first Big Sky book . . . For the magazine, my original concept was a comic-book format, which was impractical for small print runs, so I held to something like comic-book size and worked with friends who had enough offset-printing skills to crank out the pages on an old multilith on overnight binges in assorted redwood sheds."