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December 02, 2004



This is one of my favorites as well and I love, love, love the Spiegelman illustrations! They improve upon the text, in my opinion.

joe o

A good book of comic poems from the twenties is don marquis's "archy and mehitabel". At one time it was really popular but it is no longer in fashion, which means that most used book stores have a cheap copy. The poems are clever and sharper than I expected.

There are some parallels to the "wild party". A famous cartoonist (George Herriman) illustrated a later edition, and there was a broadway musical version (in the sixties).


I have a rather dinged edition from 1969 of The Wild Party paired with The Set-Up, a fable of boxing:

And what a beating the game had shown him!
His own mother wouldn't have known him.
Battered for years, his face had grown
Swollen of bone.
Cauliflower ear.
Cocoanut head.
Close-cropped hair,

A little like Vachel Lindsay's "Higher Vaudeville".


Joe, do you mean George "Krazy Kat" Herriman? That would be a find.

joe o


George "Krazy Kat" Herriman illustrated later editions of "archy and mehitabel". Those editions are pretty common.

There is a sample of an illustration at the top of this page.


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