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    Basilisk Press: 2012 Catalogue    
    To order, email oberon81[at] hotmail [dot]com, or write to Marie C. Jones and Jean Roelke, Publishers, 1716 Sena Street, Denton, TX 76201.

All chapbooks are $5.00.  Make checks payable to Marie C. Jones (not Basilisk Press), and add $2.00 for S. & H. per chapbook ordered.  Free S. & H. on orders of three books or more.  Sorry, but we are unable to accept credit cards.

Note:  to buy SuZi’s Tissue of Language, contact the author directly.  (See guidelines below.)


The Tissue of Language  (January 2007) by SuZi.  
(Chapbook printed on acid-free eggshell paper.  Graphic design and cover art by Marie C. Jones.)  Read Don Bapst’s complete review here.  To order a copy of The Tissue of Language send $5 to SuZi, P.O. Box 831544, Ocala, Florida, 34483;  for book and spoken word CD from the same manuscript, send $10.  The CD is available on

(For more information on the poet, visit her page here.)


On Back Order

Pas de deux: Prose and Other Poems  (July 2006) by Robin Silbergleid.  
(Graphic design by Marie C. Jones.  Cover art by Jean Roelke.)  In her cool but distinctive voice, Silbergleid examines her life and loves unflinchingly.  She’s a feminist, but more reflexive than angry.  She prefers questioning to preaching.  Her poems are narrative, clear as mountain spring water—and sometimes they give you a chill:

She keeps the brick beside her bed.  It flew into her window one night, scattering shards everywhere.  For weeks her voice cracked with the fragments inside.  That's what she says when people ask about the bandages.  When the cops showed up, she asked if she could keep it.  She carries it with her on walks around town, looks for the hole in the building it came from.  People move out of her way.


Love Letters: Les Cartes Postales  (August 2004) by Alifair Skebe.
(Double artist’s chapbook with original drawings and collages by the author.  Black and white cover art by the author.)  This visually stunning chapbook showcases poems that are both delicate and tough, blending passion with playfulness and the first dew of love with explosive irony:

My modesty is a travesty.
I have my written words to give.
I will write you a love poem
in the early morning hours,
say around four in the morning
when I am most definitely asleep.


How to Factor Loss  (June 2003) by Todd Hall.  
(Velum fly page.  Graphic design by Marie C. Jones.  Cover art by Jean Roelke.)  A lyrical poet of exceptional talent, Todd Hall combines devouring curiosity (for physics and mathematics, but also Wittgenstein’s philosophy, nature, music, traditional poetic forms) with finely-honed language and engaging sensuality.  With him, you will embrace the complete range of human experience—goodness, pain, beauty, the unknowable:

More cracks in the rock, and the desert forgets
the sea voices, the creatures drowned in stone—
a black extinction, a faint remembrance of tides.
My mother’s eyes, once young, have turned to sand,
brushed by wind where the moon begins to hum
a song of blood, the night’s cool and shadowed rest.


The Third Mercy  (March 2003) by Rachel Yeatts.  
A master of the sonnet, the villanelle, Old-English prosody, and other difficult forms, Rachel Yeatts also writes brilliant creative non-fiction.  The religious poems included in The Third Mercy explore faith, doubt, motherhood, and old family wounds with a lucidity that cuts to the quick.  Believers or not, we can all relate to the struggles of the strong, immensely honest soul that gave birth to such incredible poems:

If I knock, the world opens its deafening roar
of more knowledge than can ever be wept.
I must feel my way to belief’s narrow door.
(For more information on the poet, visit her page here.)


Out of Print

Presence  (fall 2002) by Marjorie Stelmach, winner of the 1994 Marianne Moore Prize for Night Drawings.  Stelmach is also the author of A History of Disappearance (University of Tampa Press, 2006).

Presence is a long free verse meditation on sculptor Mary Frank’s terra cotta women and on the accidental death of her daughter.  The slow decay of the statues, subjected to winter in the open, becomes a metaphor for the grieving process.  A sad, breathtakingly beautiful poem:

Her terra cotta women lie
in leaves.  Fossil lines
traverse their flesh.
Women, these,
of torn edges, abrupt breaks,

(For more information on the poet, visit her page here)


The History of Sleep  (spring 2002) by John Jenkinson.  
John Jenkinson’s work has appeared in numerous journal, and he has received an AWP Journals Awards.  Woodley Press (Washburn University) published his first book, Rebekah Orders Lasagna, in 2006. Humorous and grave by turn, deep without ever being ponderous, John Jenkinson handles language and poetic forms with an astonishing dexterity.  He uses original anecdotes (a brief trip to his birth town, mice stealing cat food straight from the bag) as launching pads to bravely explore new territories in the old countries of love, lust, and loss.  John’s poems are sometimes hilarious, sometimes melancholy—always amazing:

Bleak invalids, we pray in ruined churches,
cough the awful host like a hairball
clutched in our throats. Thus transpires the season
of common wind. Of barns knuckling under.
Of compliance and refining fire.


Out of Print

Alchemical Proofs  (released in 2001)  
This anthology is dedicated to Austin Hummell and includes work by eleven promising UNT poets: Richard Davis, Nancy F. Colburn, Todd Hall, Elizabeth Harvell, John Jenkinson, Marie C. Jones, Curt Meyer, Jean Roelke, Matthew Roth, Carolyn Alifair Skebe, Rachel Yeatts.  This handsome volume is illustrated with drawings of composite monsters adapted from French medieval manuscripts.

Carlotta, you are a handshake from crazy.  Do you remember the wide, straight streets of Omaha?  We were the king and queen of our postal code.  The wheat fields grew fat on our summer doorstep, laid down like dogs in the long afternoon.  Carlotta, you are a hound’s tooth from homicide.  The insects hum to themselves before they risk a note inside your night (Matthew Roth).

Also Available through Basilisk Press:


Love Song, With Mass Extinction  (released in January 2003 by Oil Hill Press, Wichita, KS. Nominated for a 2003 Pushcart Prize. Reprinted in 2004.) by Marie C. Jones.  
Love Song
is a long prose poem in ten sections analyzing the intersection of personal and collective history.  The narrator attempts to make sense of her own life in the larger context of ongoing global warming, mass extinction, world population explosion, and widespread human rights abuse:

Our cells long for the stars.  The light of distant galaxies universally shifts toward red.  Like many of us at the beginning of this new millennium, our molecules are in exile.  They will abandon us, but can they go home?  Density is the key.  The universe totters between open and closed.  One cell becomes two, and two become four.  Sometimes it’s an egg, sometimes it’s cancer.
Extinction sings.

(For more information on the poet, visit her page here)


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