Angel Hair Books, 1971. Item #1998
Saddle-stitched in wrappers. This is from an edition of 500 copies of which 26 are lettered and signed and 10 hors commerce are numbered and signed. Elmslie recalls: "When Gerard Malanga asked me to write a think-piece about Busby Berkeley's films for Andy Warhol's Interview … I decided to take the easy way out and write a poem. I measured the width of the column the poem would need to fit into, and departed from my usual practice of seemingly scattershot line breaks. I worked up a visual design for my poem: a series of exactly proportioned chunks, mostly square in shape, which would form an orderly, varied columnar sequence. The poem was accepted and … I began to include it in poetry readings—the first time at MoMA. Girl Machine jumped out at listeners, provoking an immediate, energy-charged response my other poems failed to elicit. So mysterious! Grrrr! I had no idea why. It was a poem written to order … I had nothing to do with it … Understudy becomes Star. How savvy of Angel Hair to publish it solo. A star turn, ta-da, on the page, and, subsequently, as sung." (The Angel Hair Anthology, p. 584) Ordinary issue, near fine.