Written in memory of the German collagist, painter, sculptor, and writer, Kurt Schwitters (who referred to all of his works as Merz; a syllable taken from the advertisement for the Kommerzund Privatbank and included in all his earliest assemblages), this is a series of visually arresting verbal collages from America s foremost experimental poet of the last 30 years. Lacing together words, word fragments, and phrases all relating to Schwitters and his work, some computer generated this is a landmark celebration of the Dada spirit in modern poetry. 42 Merzgedichte is yet another masterful work from the inventor of a prolific range of systematic chance operations for poetry and one of the most unique voices of modern literature.
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Jackson Mac Low was born in Chicago on September 12, 1922. He was a poet and composer, and a writer of performance pieces, essays, plays, and radio works. He was also a painter and multimedia performance artist, and often worked in collaboration with his wife, Anne Tardos. He is the author of twenty-six books, and his works have been published in many anthologies and periodicals as well as read publicly, exhibited, performed, and broadcast in North America, Europe, and New Zealand. Mac Low's publications include Two Plays: The Marrying Maiden and Verdurous Sanguinaria (Green Integer Books, 1999), 20 Forties (Zasterle Press, 1999), Barnesbook (1996), 42 Merzgedichte in Memoriam Kurt Schwitters (1994), Pieces o Six: Thirty-three Poems in Prose (1992), and Twenties: 100 Poems (1991), as well as the compact disc Open Secrets (1993), comprising eight works performed by Anne Tardos, Mac Low, and seven instrumentalists. Educated at the University of Chicago and Brooklyn College, he taught at many schools, notably the Mannes School of Music (1966) and New York University (1966-73). His awards include fellowships and grants from the Creative Artists Public Service Program, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, PEN, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. He received the the Wallace Stevens Award from the Academy of American Poets in 1999. Jackson Mac Low lived in New York City with his wife until his death on December 8, 2004.
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