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The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Inscribed Books *

* (restored)

Far too sophisticated for me I suppose is the answer.

Yet I can read it. In a strange way it compels me.

I don’t find it all funny but can see how as a play it could be fabulously funny.

I think the characters are revolting. It makes me even more sick to think that it’s been written by a woman. Ugh!

I’m quite bewildered by it.

 

‘93

Dear Brian,

We have entered a new era of safe sex.

May this book continue to stimulate & excite you, but remember the safest sex is always going to be with me!!

I love you very much,
Leah

 

Ana Marie Cox

“I don’t think
that is valid”
—Vassil Mitzeu

 

This book belongs to David John Wighton

It is a very bad book

If you find this book, please do not return it, as the owner doesn’t want this crappy book.

 

If I get killed tonight I just
wanna say I love you Mom, Dad, Eric
Mark, Leon, Grandma, Joe, Gloria
wujek + Bad sweetie.


I had to do da deed
which was to smoke some weed.
which turned me
into a centipede

men go trippin
over your own feet
as you skippin down
the street

why you tryin to front
some hospitality
when that I can see
are exit signs
saying exit only.

 

Sept. ‘73

For mummy –

may you read it all – clearly and without prejudice – right to the end!

Lots of love

Hetty xxx

 

Christmas 1958

Mr. May
Statistics – long may they live!
Alger R.

 

SOAP

SUPPOSITORY

TISSU

 

I love you

xxx

 

Dear Maurice

I didn’t know what to get to tempt you back into the delights of reading… but what better than perverts’ pleasure: Lolita! Read & enjoy.

Love Susannah x

PS: Thank you for six wonderful weeks!

PPS: Yes, permission to vomit granted!!


Oh dear! Susannah can hardly have read the book – or if she has, she has utterly misunderstood it. A profound and moving masterpiece.

[Signature]

 

Every little bit hurts ..

E L B H.

Every nite I cry Every nite I sigh

“ ” I wonder why oh you treat me cold

Yet you won’t let me go – –

E L B H  E L H C E L H C [Every little hurt counts]

You say your [sic] coming home yet you

never phone leave me all alone

my love is strong for you I do wrong – –

for you.

I can’t . . Take this lonlyness [sic] you give

me. I can’t go on giving my life away

come back to me darling

you’ll see I can give you all

the things that you wanted me for.

If you will stay with me

E L B H. E L B H

To you I am a toy and your [sic] the boy

Who has to say when I can play you

you hurt me desert me.

Carol

E L B H E L B H

E L B H

 

12/06

Troy,
May you think great thoughts,
and always organize them
diagramatically.

Coli

 

You leave this book alone, you filthy old man, who calls his wife “mommie” and has “done it” with an African alyah! [?]

 

dear George

apologies that the book is a little ragged. having read the baron in the trees some time ago i felt that it would make a suitable present to you and that in the meantime i might avail myself to the other two stories contained herein without causing you any offence.

as an architecture student i suspect you may have encountered calvino before. encounter him here in a spirit in some ways similar [?] to the little prince you lent me some time ago but richer and funnier and more elusive.

i hope trust you will find the reading as much like drinking as did i.

George, you are a very fine fellow and it is an honour and a privelidge [sic] that you call me friend and that i may call you likewise.

love Sam


Thanks G. This is a wonderful book! Especially the non-existent knight, though I couldn’t but think of it as Monty Python… Much love Tim X

 

space travel is comparable in
significance to the move of the
fishes out of water 350 million
years ago.

 

To John Hughes

Go shoot yourself

Henry

May ’58

 

My love,

If you were to
trespass, I would forgive
you, for you do see the
forest amongst the trees.

I feel you.

 

Jackson likes:
bread—white or brown
lettuce
cabbage
apple (peeled)
cucumber (peeled)
celery
carrot
hard boiled egg yolk.

Jackson is dead and I
am very sad. Next birthday
I would like two canaries like Jackson ♡

 

SLOW DOWN

 

IF THIS BOOK SHOULD DARE TO ROAM

DON’T BLAME ME!

 

16 January 89

Tony

Miller is my friend, my father, my lover; not a God, because that would be in the realms of metaphysics and unattainable. He is the Rose (thorns included) in my Crucifixion.

Garry [Gerry?]

 

For Ted

my period is 3 days late

x o.d.

 

Dear Gengiz,

Known as [full name]

From now on you’ve got my blissing dear, so NO FEAR, ON ON HAVE the best of ALL

[signature]

 

I hate Bill

 

Louise,

You have given me so much. I have only myself to give to you. My Heart, my soul and my body are at your disposal.

dispose of carefully.

Mark

 

I do hereby authorize
the dropping of a bomb on
Darlington School and its
premises in Rome, Ga., U.S.A.

John Pehler,
future leader
of the World

 

Barbara
To have met someone
and felt alive again
is wonderful…Read
this and realize that
all is possible. You are
beautiful, exciting, sexy, but
most of all the possibilities that
seem——are real.
Thanks for being at Rodney’s
on Saturday night.
Neal

P.S. You bet I want to make
love to you, but then the whole
world wants to.

 

STACY,
Hi, I hope you are hav-
ing fun. I haven’t left me
dads work because my mom
hasn’t picked me up yet so
what ya doin. I want you
to met my dad sometime.
In this book I didn’t
mean you were a dog so
don’t think I did. If Wendy
see this book I gave to you
she will be mad so don’t
show it to her. I am
eating corn nuts.

STACY, I want you to do
me another favor.

will you call 285—–
Its tola free. Ask for
Peggy. Ask her how she
is come along getting my
cat say your Lori. Tell her
my dad is upset and said
that she (Peggy) should pay 5-
10 dollar for it. Ask her
if some day she could
have me come in and
help look for the people
who have it. If she
already has it could you
have your mom drive you
there to get it.

I means so much to
me. The place is Robinson.
______. You drive
up to 1 US to n US. Just keep
driving. It is pretty far.
I is on your left.

 

Joey,
I love you Soo much!
You have surpassed the definition
for all. I will always cherish our orgasmic
moments.
love + resistance
Mark

 

Dear Mom
This may be the last time you
every see me and
this is because debbie
is insane—and if I
stay around any longer
i’ll be in her condition.

 

 

*

p.s. Hey. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi, David. Glad you enjoyed it. ** Bob, If by chance you were talking about the reference to Straub in the first sentence of the main text about Scott Barley’s work, I agree that Huillet’s name is bizarrely missing. The post was dedicated to Barley’s work, and, in searching online for a good introductory text, that one seemed by far the best and most useful, so, since my only interest in making the post was to draw attention to Barley’s films in the most helpful way possible, I decided to use that text, imperfection and all. ** Steve Erickson, Hi. I think he might have been referring to the first sentence of James Slaymaker’s piece? Was ‘Sleep Has Her House’ at Rotterdam? I didn’t notice that, if so. No, I read something about his work, can’t remember where, and was immensely intrigued then investigated his films. I later realised that he’s a Facebook friend, and we’ve been having very interesting conversations there, which is nice. I’m very pleased that you’re taken with his films. I’m not sure if ‘SHHH’ has played in NYC or not. I know Dennis Lim is a fan. I too am very curious to hear what happens when Burial meets The Bug. ** Wolf, Ha ha. Hi, Wolf, in the good old-fashioned way. Glad you liked his films. I’m dying to see them projected, which is how he intends them to be seen, and which it’s pretty easy to tell is his intention when watching them. Did your peeled eyes suss out anything this weekend that you care to share with your all-father then? I saw some art @ Palais de Tokyo and Musée d’Art Moderne, not very good art unfortunately, but the traversing was fun. And I worked on shit. And my stupid cold that had acted like it was history for a day suddenly swarmed me again, this time asking for my chest as well as my head. And that put a damper on stuff. But it was generally all right, I suppose. You, you? ** Misanthrope, Ah, how nice that his films haunted you. Yeah, they do that. He’s really good and a cool seeming guy. I’m hoping he and Zac and I can have a tete-a-tete about serious filmmaking at some point. Yeah, as I’ve said, I use the same principles to make the gif fiction that I do to make my written fiction. It just comes out different looking because I’m working with jumpy, pre-exisiting building blocks instead of elastic language. I’ll go back and finish my brushed-aside, half-baked written novel one of these days, just not sure when at the moment. Phew, he wasn’t expelled, thank god. A one-on-one counsellor doesn’t sound like a negative thing at all, or am I missing something? Oh, jeez, George, about the financial commitment all this stuff is going to take from you seemingly. Oh, man. Yeah, one of the mystical aspects of being LPS’s age is thinking you cam live inconsequentially. I’m sorry he had to fast-forward into adulthood at such an expense to you, and to him. I like florid language. You doing florid language … now that’s a curious thing to imagine. Nice. Very nice. ** Alex rose, Hi, Alex! Ha ha. Thank you ever so kindly, maestro, about my gif work. They’re super weird to make. I’ve made a bunch of them now, and trying to make them still feels confusing and completely weird. You good? Big olde love from me and from the supposed capitol of such a thing. ** JM, Oh, wow, what a coincidence about your friend working with Scott Barley. I have a friend who’s a big movie star. He co-starred in a film with Jared Leto, and, during the shoot, he told me that all the actors in the film hated JL and thought he was stupid and pretentious, and they spent the shoot trying to prank and humiliate him, off camera and on, and that JL was so stupid and pretentious that he had no idea they were doing that. I’ve never seen ‘Boxing Helena’, strange. Noted, or re-noted. Naturally, I like to think those lost, floating books will wind up on the hands of someone who, consequently, will go on to alter the future course of human history, hopefully in a positive manner. But yeah. Good weekend? ** Bill, Hey there, Bill, Thank you very much about ‘NLT’, sir, buddy. Yes, I saw that the new Tin House has a new Milhauser story, and I’m excited. I hope it’s online, although I think Tin House has a berth at Shakespeare & Co. Did you manage to have a fun and/or productive weekend? ** Jamie, Hi, Ju-Ju-Bee. No, my cold, after giving me a false sense of security that it was dead, popped back up yesterday just like in a horror movie, so I’m fighting again. I’m very happy you liked Scott Barley’s films. Yeah, they make you want to make films, I totally get that. Me too. Or, in my case, they make me want to fast-forward past the money raising and so on to Zac’s and my next film shoot. Great about your weekend working! Topped off by a parental descent. My weekend was about working, trying to work, seeing some so-so art, and ‘welcoming’ the return of my cold. It was an ‘A for effort’ only weekend. Oh, ha ha, bussetter was my unsuccessful attempt to be clever. Jetsetter + bus = bussetter. Err, yeah. May your Monday give every pigeon on earth a shampoo and a blow-dry. Really good humous love, Dennis. ** Jeff J, Hi, Jeff. I’m glad you like his films. Yeah, they’re a great discovery, I think. I read something about his films somewhere and discovered they were online and dove in, basically. Like I said above, it turned out that I was friends with him on Facebook, and we’ve had exchanges there, and he seems really great. I naturally hope your novel causes an earthquake that sidelines the other stuff. Well, apart from the play. No, I don’t know Chris Martin’s paintings. I just googled him and, no, his work doesn’t look familiar. I’ll check it out. I definitely trust Trinie’s taste. ** Chaim Hender, Hi, man! Long time no see. You good? I love Hollis Frampton, and I love ‘Less’, yes! I’ll go watch it again. Oh, if you look on the right hand margin of this blog, you’ll see that Gisele Vienne’s and my performance work ‘Kindertotenlieder’ is playing in Jerusalem in June, if you’ll be around. It’s my favorite of our works, and I’d be interested to know what you think if you see it. ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, B. I think so too, cool. Still snow? I’m sorry. We’re incredibly way past ours, I think. Just rain, rain, dreary rain. Glad you watched the Grandrieux. Gisele has a cameo in it, if you noticed. In the park. Her face. Watching the strangulation/rape. ** Okay. For whatever reason I decided to restore this goofy post from years ago. I’m sure I had my reasons. Maybe they’ll seem to have been justified? See you tomorrow.

13 Comments

  1. Hi Dennis

    About to read through this post properly; but one of my favorite inscriptions is in my copy of “A Kahlil Gibran Treasury” – I don’t like Kahlil, but I bought the book because I wanted this inscription. It simply reads.

    To the sexiest man on earth, on our wedding day.
    06.03.01

    I love it because at some point the owner had to give it away. It’s a very romantic figment of my bookshelf. Also, I have a signed copy of Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell that I found for $3 at a used bookstore that I had to fight my girlfriend for ownership of. (if you hadn’t gathered from the previous posts, not that it matters, i’m a mostly-gay male).

    OK, post done. The Dahl one is a gem.

    That Jared Leto story is an instant classic. Now I’m gonna spend the rest of my life trying to work out who this mysterious famous co-star was. I like the mystery. I’ll be nervous about the second load of GeorgeMiles books right up until the moment they arrive. If worst comes to worst I’ll just buy them again and accept that sometimes things get funky in the post. Weekend was alright. We pack in for Moonfleece later this week, so it’s all go on the acting front. I think we’ve nailed 6 of the 11 character arcs now, leaving us with 5 to go. Well, 4 to go, because one of the characters doesn’t really have an arc. There’s still some work to do there though.

    J

  2. Hi!

    Ah, thank you! This is an amazing post! I really love browsing second-hand bookshops and just reading these little notes of strangers.

    I finally managed to put the SCAB post together – I sent you an e-mail about it! Thank you for your patience and the whole opportunity again!!

    I was pretty low on energy throughout my weekend but I rested up and now I think my cold is going away! Maybe. I hope so. I just read the P.S. and learned that yours decided to come back with some unforeseen force so I hope you’ll get better very-very-very soon!
    How was today? Are you feeling any better? Did you work on the assigned script or could you just relax a little and cure yourself?

  3. David Ehrenstein

    March 5, 2018 at 2:41 pm

    I have two books signed for me by Patrice Chereau. One is a massiver illustrated volume detailing his entire career. The other is the screenplay of “L’Homme Blesse.”

  4. Since Bob’s comment came right after I posted a link to my piece on CHRONICLE OF ANNA-MAGADELNA BACH, I figured it was a dig at me. That may have been egotistical, but since he’s remained silent since that drive-by sentence he posted, I have no idea what exactly he was talking about.

    I’m looking forward to the expanded reissue of the Cars’ HEARTBEAT CITY coming out on the 30th. I wrote last year about my thoughts on their first 3 albums on Facebook. HEARTBEAT CITY was the first album I ever bought, and while I don’t remember anything from it beside the singles, the reissue adds 7 remixes,B-sides and unreleased tracks.

  5. Ahoy, me hearty!
    I hope your cold continues to follow its horror movie villain path and is only back for the last reel before it’s blammed in the head, never to be seen again.
    How are you and how was your day? I’ve had no sleep and been feeling a little sick, so my day’s been 100% blah. Thank god for tomorrow.
    I’m pretty sure I’ve told you before about the inscription in my copy of Wild Boys that I picked up second hand: ‘Jamie – Happy 18th Birthday…may your life be ‘wild’ in all the best ways! Love you loads, Mum x’. What a lovely mum.
    I love this post, btw. Think the one that got me the most was the last one. ‘this is because debbie is insane—and if I stay around any longer i’ll be in her condition.’ There’s a little drama right there. Love the kid being cheeky about the Douglas Adams book too.
    How’s your scripts going?
    May Tuesday give you all top ten places on the high score table.
    Harsh but fair love,
    Jamie

  6. Dennis, Simply Dennis (no added sugar)!
    These are so great!
    I think the characters are revolting. It makes me even more sick to think that it’s been written by a woman. Ugh! Hahaha fuck you too, mate!
    Hetty, you absolute queen of the passive aggressive revenge, gifting mum Sartre’s ranting!
    Statistics – long may they live! They will, Alger R. they will! Dog will be computing them long after we’re gone to figure out how it all went wrong!
    Lolita debate right there before the very first page!
    …you filthy old man, who calls his wife “mommie”… oh shit y’all, we found Mike Pence’s copy of ‘1 in 20’!!
    Oh no! Jackson is dead! And he was a canary! What a twist! And how sad… 🙁
    But my fav is…
    May you think great thoughts,
    and always organize them
    diagramatically.
    is absolute perfection. Boy I wish I’d written that.

    I grabbed my old copy of Camus’ Political Writings the other day and the pages were covered in notes, and the handwriting was clearly mine but a very recent-looking version, and I had absolutely ZERO memory of ever making all those notes. That spooked me. Admittedly, it takes little to.

    Not much of note happened this weekend. I mourned the demise of the snow. I cleaned the floor, and found myself stranded on the only square-foot in the flat that was not wet, with the mop in my hand and a stupid look on my face, like a dog that’s squeezed under the sofa to get his ball back and realised too late that he’s stuck in there now with the ball in his mouth. Well shit. Since that spot was right in front of some old books of mine I brought back from France recently, amongst which the aforementioned Camus, I was left with no option but to grab one of them and read until the floor dried. I picked Waiting for Godot, or rather En Attendant Godot. I read it and chuckled and grinned and thought to myself, how could Beckett be such a brilliant writer, so deceptively simple, how could he wrangle pathos and humor with such subtle skill, and how could he write so perfectly in informal French that I would never be able to tell that this was not written by someone who had spent their entire life there? How? Who knows, my friend. Genius is a mysterious thing.

  7. This is a delightful collection. I’ve doubtless mentioned it before, but my own fave book inscription is this copy of Hollywood Babylon signed for me by Kenneth Anger back in 2008. I’ll treasure it always.

    Yeah I did clock Gisele’s cameo in Despite the Night, thanks for confirming. I defo enjoyed that film a whole lot more than I did Lady Bird today, but it was still good to get out of the house for a while. The snow is fading but the coldness endures.

    I was disappointed to learn that my redundancy payment from the bank means I’m now too rich to claim benefits. Not sure what my next move should be. Anyway I now have contact details for the DCA shop manager to enquire about distribution for the Yuck ‘n Yum compendium, and I’ll get on that particular case tomorrow.

    • @ DC, re that Palais de Tokyo show you saw the other day, was it this by George Henry Longly? I was impressed by him at the Generator back in 2009, so sorry to hear his new one left you underwhelmed.

  8. These are great. I have a copy of a Selected Sherlock Holmes stories signed by Eydie Gormé (of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé). I think my brother had it with him when he spotted her and asked her to autograph it.

  9. Dennis, I remember this day!

    Yeah, LPS just doesn’t understand consequences yet or at least how bad they can be. Like with this thing, I think he thought he’d get in trouble, get suspended a few days, no biggie. I told him that once you do something like this, you lose all leverage and you’re at the mercy of others, who, especially in these times, tend to err on the side of being extra punitive or as punitive as possible. He’ll get it someday, I’m sure.

    I’m just crossing my fingers that it won’t cost me what I think it’s going to cost me. I have plans for shit this year. I’m hoping to get to Scotland in the fall for that V&A Bowie exhibition. Also, I wanted to jump up to NYC for a couple days in June when you’re there to say hey. I was going to wait a little while to see what your schedule will be like before I set any plans into motion.

    Whatever, I’m going to make it all work. I’ll find a way.

    Yes, florid. And me. I know, right? Well, it’ll be florid compared to the rest of it. And that’s because it has to be. I was very nervous about starting this fifth bit, but it just kind of hit me today exactly what I want to do with it. I’m okay now. 😀

    I’m seeing OMD in DC on Tuesday evening with my friend DR and his girlfriend (also my friend) Antifa. It should be a blast. Then we’re all getting together Saturday with some other friends for a little laid-back shindig. Should be fun all around.

  10. I’m seeing Ava DuVernay’s adaptation of A WRINKLE IN TIME tomorrow, for a review. I was going to see Soderbergh’s UNSANE the next morning, but New York is going to get hit by a Nor’easter Wednesday, and current predictions say we’re in for 5-10″ of snow, with heavy winds. This would only be our second serious snowfall of the winter, so I guess I can’t complain too much. I plan to see a later press screening of UNSANE, instead stay inside as much of Wednesday as I can and watch a video link from “New Directors/New Films” and begin my article on the fest.

    Have you heard Superorganism? They’re a group of 8 members from 3 continents who initially befriended each other on a web forum and moved together into a London house. Their debut album is a weird mix of influences: their singer has a “plainspoken teen girl with attitude” quality reminds me a lot of Lorde, and the music combines psychedelia and dance beats in a way that suggests the Go! Team producing Animal Collective while almost giving me Madchester flashbacks. They are really into bizarre samples (one song features a guy talking about prawns, while another features the sound of someone splashing in their tub running for its whole length.) Their current single “Reflections on the Screen” is my favorite song on the album.

    The AV Club’s editor was supposed to tell me today whether I have any assignments for April reviews after their meeting. But I haven’t yet heard back from her. I hope the silence is not her way of saying “we didn’t choose any of your pitches.” I will E-mail her tomorrow.

    If John Pehler wrote that on social media now, he’d get arrested an hour later.

  11. Shalom Dennis!

    Love the post: “Go shoot yourself” had me keeling over laughing so hard that my roommate got disturbed.

    I’m working with fury on a bunch of old poems and stories to send over but it won’t be for a while cause I know you’ve got a full plate. It’s just something for me to keep productive right now. I was in a multi-month stupor where I wasn’t getting anything done. Watched a lot of movies, but hardly any creative juices got sweated out. But now I’m having fun with it and seeing what comes out the other end.

    I’ve been reading and rereading Doctor Faustus at the moment and I find it ironic Marlowe, if it was him, titled it as a tragedy. It’s bursting with nihilism, healthy doses of hedonism, and acceptance of an everlasting void. I call that a comedy! I think a guy like Nitsch outta do an interpretation. IT would be completely off the wall.

  12. dennis! fun stuff…when i met mr. heim in 2008 on his tour for “we disappear” he signed in the front and then i showed him where inside the book two pages had an error: the paper had folded over and made a small flap. so he signed underneath the flap on one page so it’s a secret hidden autograph. pictures here.

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