Brainstorm Series

The Rain Taxi Brainstorm Series brings you limited edition chapbooks by accomplished writers, each limited to 300 copies or less. Signed editions are still available for many of these fine titles with a tax-deductible donation to Rain Taxi, Inc., a nonprofit organization.

You Are A Complete Disappointment: A Triumphant Memoir of Failed Expectations

youareacompletedisappointmentMike Edison
Sterling Publishing ($17.95)

by Bridget Simpson

The title of Mike Edison's newest memoir, You Are A Complete Disappointment: A Triumphant Memoir of Failed Expectations, is taken from some of the last words his father ever said to him; the very last, moments later, being "I can't believe someone as smart as you likes professional wrestling!" Because it is framed as a comedic memoir, at first glance a reader might expect You Are A Complete Disappointment to be little more than a roast of a mean, old, Jewish father. However, Edison's book unfolds into a heart-wrenching narrative of the author’s journey to make peace with his childhood, forgive his father, and find worth within himself.

Edison's resume includes a stint as a porn novelist, a European tour with his punk-rock band, and an earlier memoir entitled I Have Fun Everywhere I Go—all jobs which further fueled his father's ire. This eclectic history bolsters Edison’s humor, while simultaneously adding to his credibility. In frank prose, he admits to those details of his first memoir which were edited or embellished in one of many attempts to win his father's approval. With Edison now uninhibited by the paternal pressure that defined much of his existence up until this point, his readers become privy to the intimate details of the therapy sessions that helped him come to terms with the contents of this book.

Edison admits that in many ways, You Are a Complete Disappointment was created for personal catharsis, but the result extends beyond himself. As he noted when the book began to take form, "The more I tell the story, the more I realize that there are a lot of fathers out there who somehow along the way were stripped of their kindness and their compassion for their children . . . I remember hearing about one guy who started a war in Iraq to impress his old man." Though Edison may be sure that his own father would not be happy with his latest endeavor, his candor and honesty will no doubt connect with many readers who also feel doomed to fail their fathers. Edison's own demonstration of the long, difficult, but sometimes humorous road toward compassion will pave the way for others to follow in his footsteps.

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Rain Taxi Online Edition Summer 2016 | © Rain Taxi, Inc. 2016

Police Story

by James Tate

Twenty-one poems of small town life gone berserk from the Pulitzer-prize winning poet.

32 pp., saddle-stitched: Sorry, this chapbook is SOLD OUT.

26 copies were lettered and signed by the author and were accompanied by a handset broadside of an additional poem, "Torture." This special edition is SOLD OUT.

Published in December 1999.

Indivisible

Indivisible by Fanny HoweFanny Howe
Semiotext(e) / Native Agents Series ($11.95)

by Christopher Martin

. . . the history of a head is unavoidable being everywhere

This is the history of the head of Henny: estranged wife, surrogate mother, and mothering friend. If you add to this list her intensely religious brand of atheism, it appears, clear as ether, Henny is very much on her own. She is an invisible energy that suffuses the life of (and lives in) the book. Paradoxically, what is invisible here is also indivisible—"unavoidable being everywhere." As a character, Henny lingers submissively behind a backdrop of silent concern. Her function as a narrator, however, is to hoist the entire structure of the novel onto her brittle, uneven shoulders and deliver all the embarrassing facts directly to us, her reader/God. In order to insure the honesty of this confession, Henny pledges to tell an inclusive story without the emotional duplicity of what she calls "sequence":

Sometimes I think that God witnesses events sideways and doesn't stop because it all goes by so fast, and God can't believe what God just saw. So it is important to tell you everything, God.

Where there is "everything" there is certain contradiction, and Howe delights in using it to her advantage. Henny is a poor, pale character of little personality in an alternatively rich, flamboyant, and colorful world. Although she describes her prose as employing a "forced lack of style," she often lapses into hauntingly lyrical stretches: "Sitting outside at night was like passing around a razor to shave a zebra down to its first shape. The black sky is really a weight, can hurt, so heavy a dump of stars, some falling all turning together bare naked between them. God planted the glass that grew language." Finally, after nearly 300 pages of fragment, quandary, and moral debate, the action returns right back to where it began: the story of a woman, her mostly unconsummated love, and the children (young and old) that she has protected and preserved. Only then do we realize the full breadth and beauty of the narrative Howe has surreptitiously constructed all along.

Click here to purchase this book at your local independent bookstore
Purchase this book at your local independent bookstore.

Rain Taxi Online Edition, Summer 2001 | © Rain Taxi, Inc. 2001

A Pound of Steam

Dessa

Acclaimed as a songwriter, performer, and recording artist, the whirlwind force known as Dessa wears one moniker with particular pride: writer. A Pound of Steam presents seven poems exploring identity and alienation, a philosophical bent that can be found in her song lyrics, but here goes further to unearth truths about the human condition.

Dessa, born and raised in Minneapolis, is a poet, essayist, and musician. She studied philosophy at the University of Minnesota. Before earning her living in the arts, Dessa wrote pacemaker manuals, waited tables, painted faces, and sold knives. In her early twenties, Dessa joined the Doomtree collective. With that group, Dessa published her first literary collection, Spiral Bound, and released more than a dozen recorded projects. She now splits her time between a Minneapolis apartment and an Econoline tour van.

23 pp., perfect bound.
only $10
Includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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msab_logo_colorPrintRain Taxi, in partnership with Dessa, is a fiscal year 2013 recipient of a Cultural Community Partnership grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature; and by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Egyptian Sonnets

by John Yau
The twenty-four poems of Yau's Egyptian Sonnets journey through a night-time landscape populated by jackels, hippos, and fading moments of time, where "dust lips were all that remained."

32 pp., saddle-stitched. Edition of 226 copies.
$10 includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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26 copies are lettered and signed by the author and include original art by the author. Signed copies are available with a $250 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer. donate now
Published in March 2012.

The Zoo Club

by James Tate

The first rule of The Zoo Club is there is no zoo, except perhaps the zoo of life: llamas that aren’t there, exploding furnaces, the dreaming dead... in his inimitable fashion, James Tate’s new prose poems explore the strange synergies of life.

30 pp., perfect bound. Edition of 300 copies.
$10 includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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26 hardcover silver stamped copies are lettered and signed by the author. Signed copies are available with a $250 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer. donate now

Published in June 2011.

Chapter 28

by Richard Hell

A no-holds-barred, sexually explicit, alternate version of a chapter from Richard Hell's autobiography, I Dreamed I Was A Very Clean Tramp, this limited edition chapbook offers a conceptually complex meditation on the music-era sex life of one of punk's originators and leading provocateurs. Cover drawing mixing the words “slave” and “salve” by Richard Hell and Christopher Wool. Read a review of this chapbook HERE!

Kentucky-HellBroadside28 pp., saddle-stitched. Edition limited to 200 copies.
$10 includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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26 additional copies are lettered and signed by the author, and come with a limited edition, 6" x 13" letterpress broadside of an additional excerpt entitled "Kentucky," also signed by the author. A lettered, signed set is available with a $250 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer.
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Published in October 2010.

The Road To Camden

by Kees ’t Hart
translated from the Dutch by Frans Cateau van Rosevelt

A meditation on a journey to Walt Whitman's home.

36 pp., Perfect Bound. Edition limited to 200 copies.
$10 includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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26 Hardcover (black boards with silver stamping) copies are lettered and signed by the author. Signed copies are available with a $250 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer. donate now

Published in October 2007.

City Of

by Alice Notley

A dynamic new sequence, never before published, by the prize-winning author of Disobedience.

28 pp., saddle-stitched, printed vellum endpapers. Edition limited to 200 copies.
Sorry, the unsigned edition is sold out. Signed copies are available:

26 copies are lettered and signed by the author, and each signed copy is accompanied by an original 6" x 9" watercolor by Alice Notley. Signed copies are available with a $250 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer. donate now

Published in December 2005.

Revival House

by Donald Revell

Ten riveting new poems weave apocalyptic visions into a cinematic frame of mind, by the winner of the 2004 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize for My Mojave.

28 pp., perfect bound, edition limited to 226 copies.
$9 includes S&H in the U.S. Shipping costs added for overseas shipping.
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26 are lettered and signed by the author. Signed copies are available with a $100 donation to Rain Taxi. You may make your donation via Paypal using a credit card or bank transfer. donate now

Published in October 2004.