Semina, Issue 4, 1959

One of the roughly 300 copies of Semina #4, which includes William Burroughs' "excerpt from Pantopon Rose", which became the opening segment to the "Have you seen Pantopon Rose?" section of The Naked Lunch

Nearly complete, with the "Excerpts from a film now in progress entitled 'Semina' by W. Berman" missing. Oddly, this copy has two copies of Judson Crews' contribution present. According to RealityStudio, David Meltzer's contribution "Sampson Agonistes" should also be present, however the Boo-Hooray Catalog Semina 1955-1964 Art Is Love Is God does not show this in their reproductions; it may be a common absence.

Despite the eccentricity of the contents this copy was Michael McClure's copy -- a friend and collaborator with Berman – with very clear provenance. 

A Burroughs rarity.

External Links: 

Bibliographic Information: 

  • M&M C11
  • Not in Shoaf
  • Schottlaender v4.C12
  • Raven 19590000SEMI.0.4
  • Wallace Berman: 
    • "Wife" (cover image)
    • "Morphine Mother" (poetry, as Pantale Xantos)
  • Allen Ginsberg: "To Lindsay" (poetry)
  • Beverly Collins: "todays children" (poetry)
  • Charles Foster: "paleolithic dawns" (poetry)
  • Ssu-ma Ch'ien: poem from Shih-chi, translation by Charles Guenther
  • "Excerpts from a film now in progress entitled 'Semina' by W. Berman" [missing in this copy]
  • Robert Alexander (as I. E. Alexander): "The Point Encased" (poetry)
  • Aya Tarlow (as Idell T. Romero): "A Thimble of Goodbye" (poetry)
  • John Chance: "Talking Buddhism with My Lawyer" (poetry)
  • John Reed: "it was her love" (poetry)
  • Charles Stark: photograph with John Reed's poem
  • John Wieners: "And what is nothingness" (poetry)
  • Judson Crews: Right Now I Am Not So Very Big" (poetry) [two instances in this copy]
  • Jules Supervielle: "I feel that this ear..." (poetry, translated by Charles Guenther)
  • Michael McClure: "We're in the middle of a deep cloud" (poetry)
  • Philip Lamantia: "Ah Blessed Virgin Mary" (poetry)
  • Pierre Jean Jouve: "Sur un Mystère" (poetry, translated by Howard Shulman)
  • Ray Bremser: "cat digging walls" (poetry)
  • Robert Kaufman: "Dear People" (poetry)
  • Ron Loewinsohn:"The pieces of watermelon" (poetry)
  • Stuart Perkoff: "boplicity" (poetry)
  • W. B. Yeats: "Oil and Blood" (poetry)
  • William Burroughs: "excerpt from Pantopon Rose" (poetry/prose)
  • William Blake: "To God" (poetry)
Publishing Information
  • Publisher, editor, distributor: Wallace Berman


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