A Little Cairn, Mary Ruefle


letterpress broadside A Little Cairn by Mary Ruefle
detail of letterpress broadside A Little Cairn by Mary Ruefle

Dubbed “A Little Cairn” by Mary, this print is composed of bits broken off from four different poems: “Faster Love Is All There Is,” “Rumors of Earth,” and “Q&A,” Trances of the Blast, Wave Books 2013, and “Timberland,” Selected Poems, Wave Books 2010.

When I read Mary Ruefle’s work, I feel at once opened-up-wide, utterly delighted, often perplexed, and always surprised. Working with her has been the same, down to the final detail. My original intent for this project was a more straightforward broadside, but when confronted with a wide open offer to select a poem from among any of Mary’s published works, I balked. How to choose??

Six months of reading, a few type-writer-written letters exchanged, and encouraging consultation with Tree Swenson resulted in this cento-esque piece, a Mary Ruefle sampler if you will. While it stands on its own, I hope it leads you to the full poems.

Production notes

metal type form A Little Cairn Mary Ruefle

Author: Mary Ruefle
Publisher: Wave Books
Type: Perpetua & photopolymer plate from author’s handwriting
Paper: 100# French Speckletone True White
Ink: 2 colors / 3 passes
Press: 1906 Colt’s Armory
Size: 9×12 inches
Edition: 275 copies
Date: December 2018