Poet/author/artist/small press publisher (legend!) Charles Plymell roared out of Kansas with tires blazing while the Beat scene was still in training wheels. Weaned on jump blues, true grit and Dr. Gimmy Gommy’s Goodies, Plymell redefined the fast track with blunt force, map zap and brute strength forged of desperation and attitude.
Charles Plymell lived in San Francisco in the early 1960’s, sharing a house with Allen Ginsberg and Neal Cassady. Plymell spent important, memorable times with Ginsberg, Cassady, William S. Burroughs, and Jack Kerouac. His writings from this period are collected in APOCALYPSE ROSE, which appears, complete, in BENZEDRINE HIGHWAY.
Plymell eventually settled in upstate New York, where he taught writing to prisoners.
He has published, printed, and designed numerous underground magazines and books with his wife Pamela Beach. He published Ray Bremser and Herbert Huncke, whom he identified with from the hipster 1950s, and was influential in the underground comix scene, first printing Zap Comix artists such as Robert Crumb and S. Clay Wilson, whom he first published in Lawrence, Kansas. Plymell was the first printer of Robert Crumb's Zap Comix.
Kicks Books now presents BENZEDRINE HIGHWAY, which includes the first ever republication of Plymell’s long out of print first book of poetry, APOCALYPSE ROSE, his first prose book, LAST OF THE MOCASSINS, and a new autobiographical introduction which speeds you into the wild world of Charles Plymell where his words warp one’s horizontal, and stand one’s vertical on its pointed little head.
Join Charles Plymell as he speaks from and about BENZEDRINE HIGHWAY at a very special evening at NYC’s historic Jefferson Market Library on Friday, November 8, at 7:30 PM. He will be introduced by his friend, fellow poet, artist, and photographer, Gerard Malanga. Admission is free. Books will be available for purchase.
Benzedrine Highway is published by Kicks Books, Box 646 Cooper Station, NYC 10276
Also by Charles Plymell:
Apocalypse Rose, Dave Haselwood Books, San Francisco, CA, 1967. Neon Poems, Atom Mind Publications, Syracuse, NY, 1970. The Last of the Moccasins, City Lights Books, San Francisco, CA, 1971; Mother Road Publications, 1996. Moccasins Ein Beat-Kaleidoskop, Europa Verlag, Vienna, Austria, 1980. Over the Stage of Kansas, Telephone Books, NYC, 1973. The Trashing of America, Kulchur Foundation, NYC, 1975. Blue Orchid Numero Uno, Telephone Books, 1977. Panik in Dodge City, Expanded Media Editions, Bonn, W. Germany, 1981. Forever Wider, 1954-1984, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen, NJ, 1985. Was Poe Afraid?, Bogg Publications, Arlington, VA, 1990. Hand on the Doorknob, Water Row Books, Sudbury, MA, 2000; Some Mother’s Sons, Cherry Valley Editions, Cherry Valley, NY, 2005; Mindeater, Verlag Peter Engstler, Germany, 2009; Eat Not Thy Mind, Glass Eye Books/Peace Eye Library, Northampton, MA 2010