"Philip was a visionary like Blake, and he really saw the whole world in a grain of sand." --Lawrence Ferlinghetti
"An inspired consciousness set at full tilt in raging protest, kisses, prayers, blessings, and outraged demands. All from the deepest silence and farthest travel." --Michael McClure
Preserving Fire recounts the life and thought of the Surrealist, Beat Generation, and San Francisco Renaissance poet Philip Lamantia through his fugitive prose works. Ranging from poetry to politics to mythology to dance, from manifestos to travelogues to wartime declarations of conscientious objection, these writings, expertly collected by friend and longtime City Lights editor Garrett Caples, offer a dynamic picture of Lamantia's multifaceted intellectual life and the artistic movements he helped shape.
Philip Lamantia (1927-2005) was an influential Surrealist, Beat, and San Francisco Renaissance poet. He is the author of many books, including Erotic Poems, Touch of the Marvelous, Meadowlark West, Tau and Journey to the End, and The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia.
Garrett Caples is the author of many books, most recently Power Ballads and Retrievals. He is the co-editor of The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia and is an editor at City Lights Books, where he curates the Spotlight Poetry Series.
Earn by promoting books
Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.Become an affiliate
About the Author
Garrett Caples is the author of Power Ballads (Wave Books, 2016), Retrievals (Wave Books, 2014), The Garrett Caples Reader (1999), Complications (2007), and Quintessence of the Minor (Wave Books, 2010). He is the editor of Preserving Fire: Selected Prose (Wave Books, 2018) by Philip Lamantia, and the co-editor of The Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia (2013), Particulars of Place (2015) by Richard O. Moore, and Incidents of Travel in Poetry: New and Selected Poems (2016) by Frank Lima. He is an editor at City Lights Books and curates the Spotlight Poetry Series there. He was also a contributing writer to the San Francisco Bay Guardian. He has written articles and blogged for the Poetry Foundation and occasionally blogs for blogcitylights.com. He has a Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Berkeley, and lives in San Francisco.
"After decrying interpretation, Sontag notes that the 'world, our world, is depleted, impoverished enough. Away with all duplicates of it, until we again experience more immediately what we have.' This--experiencing immediately what we have, and being open to that experience--strikes me as the broad point of Lamantia's work. It also seems a sound approach to reading Lamantia's extensive body of poetry, and now his prose too. Which I recommend you do."
--Kevin O'Rourke, Kenyon Review