You can find Lithic Press titles at these rad bookstores!

You can find Lithic Press titles at these rad bookstores!

Thank you to these rad bookstores for carrying our titles!


Barefoot Cowgirl Books
18 N. San Francisco Street
Flagstaff, AZ 86001

Grand Valley Books
350 Main Street
Grand Junction, CO 81501

Out West Books
533 Main Street
Grand Junction, CO 81501

Solid Jackson Books
3925 Farnam Street
Omaha, NE 68131

Between the Covers
224 W Colorado Avenue
Telluride, CO 81435

Back of Beyond
83 N Main Street
Moab, UT 84532

City Lights Bookstore
261 Columbus Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94133

Innisfree Poetry Bookstore & Cafe
1301 Pennsylvania Avenue
Boulder, CO 80302

Colorado Mesa University Bookstore
1151 Elm Avenue
Grand Junction, CO 81501

University of New Mexico Bookstore
2301 Central Avenue NE
Albuquerque, NM 87106

Colorado State University Pueblo
2200 Bonforte Blvd. 
Pueblo, CO 81001

Garcia Street Books
376 Garcia Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501

Collected Works Bookstore & Coffehouse
202 Galisteo Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501

Op.Cit. Books
157 Paseo De Peralta
Santa Fe, NM 87501




Categories: Third Mind


The Siren World by Juan J. Morales (Lithic Press, Spring 2015)


Juan J. Morales' forthcoming book of poems, The Siren World, is a collection at once intensely personal and seemlessly universal. The poems delve into the wonders and horrors of the world and reveal the mind of a poet open to anything that may strike his widely ranging thoughts. Along with visits to his parents’ homelands of Ecuador and Puerto Rico, this very American poet spies on King Carlos V conjuring empire, envisions the murderous mobs of present-day Ambato, and the brutal death of Pizarro. Here are great migrations and conquests. Here are…abandoned Gods…bumping shoulders with our modern world. Here is a detained prisoner of a brutal regime (…buried up to my neck in the yard …I sew my lips shut with black thread…), alongside a father gingerly but powerfully removing a barbed fishhook from the finger of his son.
Morales locates himself time after time in any variety of ponderings as in, The Right Way To Die For A Poem,where he finds himself both within the lineage of poets and the long heritage of those with the urge to write it down, while also acknowledging his own mortality. He’s a fast driver. His thoughts go far. And yet, in many of the poems, he finds himself firmly in the magic of the mundane world, with the common yearnings that we humans have regardless of where we live. From all the places Morales inhabits comes an underlying current that coalesces into acceptance and understanding or, dare I say, the statement of a purpose for this existence; as in the poem, For the Underdogs, …I write so something like hope emerges…
-Danny Rosen, Lithic Press Founder

An excerpt from The Siren World:


I was five when I learned my own blood.
Dad and I fished the lake of cement slabs,
out past yellow grass, our feet jammed in mud.
I pulled the snagged line. Snapped back. The hook stabbed
my thumb, slid past bone, dented the fingernail.
The sun's search for horizon came about
reflecting filament line, a detail
like dad dropping the bucket of caught trout.

Everything halted: the water still cold,
red salmon eggs stuck on our hooks for bait.
He steadied my hand–shaking, uncontrolled.
Father worked the hook. Barbs excavated
through skin ripped. For the tiny hole, I cried,
the blood pooled in our hands I could not guide.


Juan J. Morales is the author the chapbook, The Ransom and Example of Atahualpa, and the collection, Friday and the Year That Followed, winner of the 2005 Rhea Seymour and Gorsline Poetry Prize. His poetry has appeared and is forthcoming in Acentos Review, Copper Nickel, Crab Orchard Review, Huizache, North Dakota Review, Palabra, Poet Lore, Sugar House Review, Washington Square, Zone 3, and others. He is the Editor/Publisher of Pilgrimage Magazine, a CantoMundo Fellow, and an Associate Professor of English at Colorado State University-Pueblo, where he directs the Creative Writing Program and curates the SoCo Reading Series.

For inquiries and/or more information please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Tomorrow I’ll chrysanthemum!

Jack Mueller’s THE GATE, now available…

Jack settled into his place at the counter—making ink sketches on 3X5 cards, pointing out the ways of the world, dripping aphorisms and abbreviations. I set some canvas panels, compressed charcoal crayons and pastels on the counter by him. Jack immediately took to the pastels and did up four or fives canvases in short order. He works fast. One canvas is the red and black sketch that appears at the front of Jack’s new book, The Gate, which is now available  here

‘Of many wordmasters (it was said)’ begins The Gate, a 20-page poem, described in an introductory paragraph as, an essay in open form – or a poem as essay, is an exploration into the origin, evolution, organization and development of Language. Like a sea voyage on a ship of words, the poem does not linearly display the history of written language as much as become that History itself. It is a serpent ride in ancient waters, an organism turning ceaselessly toward the island of wild logos! Gems appear throughout - cobbed from the mind of the poet and from the many minds the poet has known… (what you don’t know, love)  (spiritus ubi vult spirat)  (“life is probably round” – Van Gogh)  (“The apprehension of polarity is the basic act of imagination”)  (wo gehst Du?)  (“Tomorrow I’ll chrysanthemum”) Indeed! This is writing in the Open Field in the tradition of Jack’s great mentors, Robert Duncan, Charles Olson, and Walt Whitman.

“It is


Reading The Gate out loud is an invigoration, a verbal workout, a hard trip up the mountain where it all began. It is a continuation of a philosophical discussion Jack has conducted his entire life. It is a poem of Hope with a capitol H. It’s a whale of a good time. The book shipped the other night. My printer, Gary, called at 9:00. He and Giselle greeted me at the door with martinis. The hardcover is beautiful. I’ve been sleeping with it.

-Danny Rosen, Lithic Press, founder
The Gate is printed in two editions:
(limited edition, 100 numbered copies)
(8 ½ X 11)

ZYZZYVA reviews Amor Fati by Jack Mueller


What It Means to Be Alive and Dying at the Same Time: Jack Mueller’s ‘Amor Fati’



Amor Fati, a thick volume of new and selected poems from Beat affiliate and once San Francisco fixture Jack Mueller, truly lives up to its name (Lithic Press; 177 pages). “Love of fate,” as the title translates, appears in these pages in many forms: as contemplative acceptance, surly fatalism, awed joy. One moment pondering the nature of death, the next exuberantly describing a bird, Mueller vacillates between optimism and resignation as he moves between the registers of philosophical abstraction and concrete observation. Distinctly the work of an older writer, Amor Fati tackles almost exclusively cosmic questions—about mortality, love, and our relationship to language.

Read the rest of the review here.


From Jeffers...

From Jeffers...

"If God has been good enough to give you a poet

Then listen to him. But for God's sake let him alone until he is dead;"

                                              -- from, Let Them Alone



The Jack Mueller Poetry Festival

Lithic Press is proud to present The Jack Mueller Poetry Festival!

Categories: The Jack Mueller Festival , Third Mind


The Jack Mueller Poetry Festival

Jack Mueller, San Francisco 1980.


AUGUST 25th, 26th & 27th, 2017• FRUITA, COLORADO


Lithic Press is honored to organize and host the first Jack Mueller Poetry Festival. In addition to the wide impact Jack Mueller has had, and continues to have, on poets throughout Colorado, he was also instrumental in the birth of Lithic, which arose from the manuscripts and loose papers piled on his dining room table. In addition to poetry and theatrical readings, symposiums and discussions, we will pay homage to Jack by reading his essay in open form, The Gate, followed by a discussion and open reading.

All festival events are free and open to the public. They will take place at Lithic Bookstore & Gallery unless otherwise noted.

Lithic Bookstore & Gallery
138 S. Park Square #202
Fruita, CO 81521

For more information email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (970) 858-3636


Congratulations to Neeli Cherkovski on being awarded the Jack Mueller Poetry Prize!



 The tentative schedule is as follows:



Friday, August 25th


4pm - Film: The Line Has Shattered 

The Line Has Shattered is an invaluable teaching tool as well as a fascinating sketch of the community that came together for the legendary Vancouver Poetry Conference. Historians, poets, and lovers of poetry must give thanks to director Robert McTavish for rescuing rare footage from the archives and contextualizing the socio-political landscape that informed North American experimental poetry in the mid-1960s. This documentary does much to explain the trajectory of the Open Field practices that began with the San Francisco Renaissance and unfurled from coast to coast for the next five decades. You can view the trailer here.




5:30pm - Welcome: Food & Drink




7pm - Reading featuring Art Goodtimes, Judyth Hill, Adam Houle, & Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer followed by an Open Reading

Poet, weekly newspaper columnist, and Rainbow Family elder, Art Goodtimes of Norwood weaves non-traditional coil baskets, grows 25+ varieties of organic heirloom potatoes and recently completed his fifth term in San Miguel County as Colorado’s only Green Party county commissioner. Poet-in-residence of the Telluride Mushroom Festival since 1981 (www.telluridemushroomfest.org), founder and director of various Talking Gourds poetry events since 1989 (talkinggourds.weebly.com), poetry editor for the national mycological magazine Fungi (www.fungimag.com) and co-editor of an on-line poetry zine, Sage Green Journal (sagegreenjournal.org), Art served as the first Poet Laureate of Colorado’s Western Slope (2011-13) and his most recent book is Looking South to Lone Cone: the Cloud Acre Poems (Western Eye Press, 2013).

Judyth Hill, poet, editor and writing teacher, has published nine books of poetry, including Hardwired For Love; Men Need Space; Dazzling Wobble and Tzimzum. Her newest book, Love Called Me Here, is forthcoming in 2018. Her poems are included in numerous anthologies, and she is the author of the internationally acclaimed poem, Wage Peace, published world ‘round, and set to music and recorded twice: by the Cincinnati Women’s Chorus, 2009, and by the St Olaf’s Choir, 2015. Judyth served as Literary Projects Director for New Mexico Office of Cultural Affairs, and is the current President of PEN International in San Miguel de Allende. Educated at Sarah Lawrence College, Judyth studied with poet Robert Bly and Deep Ecologist Dolores LaChapelle. She is the recipient of grants from the Witter Bynner Poetry Foundation, McCune Foundation, and New Mexico Endowment for the Humanities.

Adam Houle’s poems have appeared in journals such as AGNI, Shenandoah, Guernica, Barrow Street, Post Road, Cave Wall, Poet Lore, Blackbird, Hayden’s Ferry Review, and his fiction can be found in Cimarron Review. Claudia Emerson selected his work for Best New Poets 2010. Nominated for both a Pushcart and for Best of the Net, he was also a semi-finalist for the Boston Review / “Discovery” Prize and a finalist for the Art & Letters Rumi Prize in Poetry. He earned a PhD from Texas Tech and currently lives in Darlington, South Carolina with writer and editor Landon Houle. 

Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer's poetry has appeared in O Magazine, in back alleys, on A Prairie Home Companion and on river rocks. She was appointed Poet Laureate of Colorado's Western Slope (2015-2017) and co-directs the Talking Gourds Poetry Club. Since 2006, she's written a poem a day. Favorite one word mantra: adjust.



Saturday, August 26th


10:30am - Breakfast Symposium: Belle Turnbull & The History of Poetry in Colorado by David Rothman 

Belle Turnbull (1881-1970) was the first strong poet to live in and write about the mountains and high mining towns of the Colorado Rockies. Well-known during her life but long out of print,Turnbull’s lyrics of sublime alpine wilderness and her narratives about the harsh and dangerous world of hard rock mining offer us a profoundly original vision of the American west that transcends the region. David Rothman recently edited, Belle Turnbull: On the Life & Work of an American Master, which was published by Pleiades Press. Rothman serves as the Director of Western’s Graduate Program in Creative Writing, along with also directing the Poetry Concentration. His most recent volumes of poetry, both of which appeared in 2013, are The Book of Catapults (White Violet Press) and Part of the Darkness (Entasis Press). A book of essays about mountains and mountain towns, Living the Life (Conundrum Press), also appeared in 2013. His poems, essays and scholarly work have appeared widely, in journals including Appalachia, Atlantic Monthly, Gettysburg Review, Hudson Review, Kenyon Review, Poetry, and scores of other newspapers, journals and periodicals.



2pm - Multitudes: A One-Man Play About Walt Whitman

Fruita's own Zephyr Stage presents an original work written by Valerie and Kim Nuzzo. "Multitudes" is a one-man show about the great gay father of American poetry Walt Whitman! The play addresses death, sexuality, slavery, the Civil War and Whitman’s poetic vision of democratic ideals. Kim Nuzzo, a resident actor with Zephyr Stage, performs the role of Walt Whitman. Kim is a visual artist and published poet. He’s performed many roles for Aspen’s Hudson Reed Ensemble including Scrooge and Julius Caesar, among others. He was also the titular star of the film Bumps Jackson: The Last American Ski Bum. Valerie Haugen Nuzzo is the Executive Artistic Director of Zephyr Stage, and has written several plays, most recently co-writing Passionate Collaborators: Burns & Allen.  She’s performed in more than 50 productions with Thunder River Theatre Company in Carbondale, including playing all the big Greek girls - Lysistrata, Medea and Antigone.



4pm - Memorial Reading & Discussion of Jack Mueller's The Gate by Danny Rosen 

The Gate is an essay in open form–or a poem as essay. It represents part one of an ongoing work. This poetic essay had its origns in a series of conversations in the basement of the Golden Flyer restaurant on the waterfront in San Francisco. Irregular sessions were attended by Kirby Doyle, Tisa Walden, Howard Hart, Gregory Corso, Neeli Cherkovski and other poets and painters from North Beach. The meetings only continued for a few months, but the talk was passionate and productive. During that time I kept a notebook of my own thoughts towards an evolving poetics. The notebook, an orange German school issue had the words “Tell Notiz” on its cover. That was the original title of the essay, and it resonated neatly with my investigations at the time into the linguistic and archeological findings of Tell Mardikh in Syria–studies that point to the origins of written language in the West. Some of the remarks and ideas brought up in our talks found their way into the essay. In most cases, those remarks are in quotations and attributed to the speaker (or author) of the statements.

In addition to the hardcover and saddle-stitched editions, Lithic Press has a free PDF available for download/print if you would like to familiarize yourself with the work before the event: The Gate FREE PDF

Jack Mueller was a well known poet among poets, long active in the legendary North Beach, San Francisco scene, as well as New Orleans and the Western Slope of Colorado.  He was a literary icon, educator, organizer, ocean sailor, mountain climber, poet and cultural leader in the arts. In the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, Mueller gained a reputation among the post-Beat poets in the Bay Area literary scene with his readings and cultural performances. Lawrence Ferlinghetti, renowned poet and co-founder of the landmark City Lights bookstore in San Francisco, said, “Jack Mueller is the biggest-hearted poet I have ever known.” Read more...




7pm - Reading featuring Sommer Browning, Neeli Cherkovski & Wendy Videlock followed by an Open Reading

Sommer Browning writes poems, draws comics, and tells jokes in Denver. She is the author of YOU'RE ON MY PERIOD (Counterpath, 2016), THE CIRCLE BOOK (Cuneiform Press, 2015), BACKUP SINGERS (Birds, LLC, 2014), PRESIDENTS AND OTHER JOKES (Future Tense Books, 2013), and EITHER WAY I'M CELEBRATING (Birds, LLC, 2011). She is a librarian.

Neeli Cherkovski was born in Los Angeles and attended Los Angeles State College (now Cal State Los Angeles). He is the author of many books of poetry, including Animal (1996), Leaning Against Time (2005), From the Canyon Outward (2009), and The Crow and I (2015). He is the coeditor of Anthology of L.A. Poets (with Charles Bukowski) and Cross-Strokes: Poetry between Los Angeles and San Francisco (with Bill Mohr). He has also published bilingual editions in Austria, Mexico, and Italy. A facsimile edition of one of his notebooks was published by Viviani Edizione in Verona, Italy. Cherkovski also wrote biographies of Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Charles Bukowski, as well as the critical memoir Whitman’s Wild Children (1988). His papers are held at the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley. He has lived in San Francisco since 1974. His collection Elegy For My Beat Generation is forthcoming from Lithic Press. 

Wendy Videlock’s poems have appeared widely, most notably in Poetry, Hudson Review, Rattle, The New Criterion, Poetry Review (UK), and The New York Times. She is the author of the chapbook What’s That Supposed to Mean (Exot Books), and three full-length collections including Nevertheless (Able Muse Press 2011, a finalist for the 2012 Colorado Book Award in poetry) and The Dark Gnu (Able Muse Press 2013), the latter a book for “children of all ages.” Her newest book, the satirical Slingshots and Love Plums, also appears from Able Muse Press. Wendy is a visual artist who often works in alcohol inks, and her work has been shown in several Colorado galleries. She lives with her husband in western Colorado.






Sunday, August 27th


10am - Breakfast Symposium: Gourd Circle with Art Goodtimes (at Lithic founder Danny Rosen's house)

Poet, weekly newspaper columnist, and Rainbow Family elder, Art Goodtimes of Norwood weaves non-traditional coil baskets, grows 25+ varieties of organic heirloom potatoes and recently completed his fifth term in San Miguel County as Colorado’s only Green Party county commissioner. Poet-in-residence of the Telluride Mushroom Festival since 1981 (www.telluridemushroomfest.org), founder and director of various Talking Gourds poetry events since 1989 (talkinggourds.weebly.com), poetry editor for the national mycological magazine Fungi (www.fungimag.com) and co-editor of an on-line poetry zine, Sage Green Journal (sagegreenjournal.org), Art served as the first Poet Laureate of Colorado’s Western Slope (2011-13) and his most recent book is Looking South to Lone Cone: the Cloud Acre Poems (Western Eye Press, 2013).






For those planning to attend here is some general information about Fruita, Colorado…


Fruita is the gateway to canyon country. The entrance to Colorado National Monument is just a few miles south of town. The Colorado National Monument preserves one of the grand landscapes of the American West. But this treasure is much more than a monument. Towering monoliths exist within a vast plateau and canyon panorama. You can experience sheer-walled, red rock canyons along the twists and turns of Rim Rock Drive, where you may spy bighorn sheep and soaring eagles, all complete with cellphone coverage. Just to the west of the Monument are the Devil’s Canyon and Pollack Canyon trailheads, as well as the Fruita Paleontology Site, which are all wonderful places to mosey, wander or hike.


For those whose backs, legs and lungs have not yet given out, Fruita has become known as a mecca for mountain biking. Amazing trails abound for the novice and the expert. There are two friendly full-service bike shops just down the street from the bookstore ready to help get you on your way.


Some possibilities for lodging:




**Comfort Inn   (970) 858-1333

**Super 8   (970) 858-0808

Balanced Rock   (970) 858-7333

La Quinta   (970) 858-8850


**Offering special rates for Poetry Festival attendees.





Colorado River State Park   (970)434-3388

North Fruita Desert BLM Campground   (970) 244-3000

Colorado National Monument   (970 )858-3617

Monument RV Park (970) 858-4405



Vacation Home Rentals:


Fruita Crash Pad   (970)309-0253






Categories: Third Mind



August 27th, 2003 was a day widely publicized when Mars would be closer to Earth than any time for the last 60,000 years. The popular press around the world blared headlines that Mars would appear, “as large as the full Moon in a small telescope.” I disdain this kind of hype from the astronomical community. It’s unnecessary and leads to a let-down for the public. Space doesn’t need hype - it’s always remarkable to look at the night sky and ponder our place in the grand vastness. I had just begun running the Sossusvlei Observatory in Namibia. It had a very good telescope, but even in very good, earth-based, telescopes, Mars is always a bit of a let down. Some light areas and some dark areas are discernable. With careful use of the eyes, and a stable earthly atmosphere, the white polar ice cap could be seen, amazing indeed, but Mars lacks the pizazz of Saturn or the Moon or any number of deep sky objects in the stunning southern sky.
One of my first guests at the observatory was the biologist/paleontologist Niles Eldredge. It was great to speak with another geologist about the rocks in the Namib Desert. I knew Eldridge had done work in the area. He and Steven J. Gould are best known for their 1972 paper on Punctuated Equilibirium, an addendum, or an altenative mechanism of Darwinian evolution. It states that most species, once they become apparent in the fossil record, remain in stasis, with little change over very long periods of time. The change of one species into another occurs relatively rapidly, due to drastic and rapid environmental disturbance.

The concept of punctuated equilibrium describes the mode of operation here at the Lithic Press, so far. We started with a flurry in 2008. Then, after a long period of stasis, we are now in the midst of another punctuation. 2013 saw the publication of Amor Fati by Jack Mueller, as well as Finding Cassiopeia by Frank H. Coons and Hyacinth by Kyle Harvey. Both Finding Cassiopeia and Hyacinth were finalists for the Colorado Book Award. 

Here in 2014 we continue to work towards publishing new works by Jack Mueller, Art Goodtimes and Danny Rosen, as well as a collection of poems inspired by the Grand Canyon, as curated by Rick Kempa and Peter Anderson. 

Stay tuned for news and further musings.