Viewing entries tagged
poetry broadside


A Garden in Winter...

Winter Garden in tree

"Always maintain a kind of Summer, even in the middle of Winter."

~ Henry David Thoreau

Poet, professor, and gardener Stan Galloway takes Thoreau's sentiments to heart in his beautiful poem, "Winter Garden," which is just out now as a limited edition letterpress broadside from St Brigid Press. Savor these selected lines:

clouds purple where dusk and storm meet                                       glazed December snow pellets

I take the box from under the stairs                                               partial packets of last year's seeds

without a shovel or a line of string                                           start to garden, finger each envelope...

Galloway goes on to describe different kinds of seeds in this poem-dream, which inspired the Press' Emily Hancock to conjure them from carved blocks, then illumine them by hand-watercoloring each one.

Hand carving the poem's seeds in a linoleum block.

Bringing the seeds to life with watercolors.

The result is a lovely collaboration of word and image. Hancock hand-set the poem, letter by letter, in the historic Koch-Antiqua typeface, then printed poem and carving in dark grey ink on fawn-colored Stonehenge paper.

Last weekend, we were thrilled to be a part of the Bridgewater International Poetry Festival. Galloway, the festival's organizer, debuted the poem and broadside to the gathered on the first evening.

Dr. Stan Galloway, reading "Winter Garden" at the Bridgewater International Poetry Festival (1/15/15).

Each print, one of a limited edition of 80, is hand-numbered, double-matted with archival mats, backed with archival board, and safely encased in a clear archival bag. To read the poem in its entirety, scroll to the bottom of this page. To order, visit our secure online Store.

Warm your winter days with a print of Galloway's poem; let it dream you toward the light, the rising life, of spring.

All best to all,

St Brigid Press

Hand-setting "Winter Garden," letter by letter and space by space.

The poem emerges from the hand-cranked printing press, one sheet at a time.

Just in time for the poem's debut, a little snow fell!


The poem in its entirety.



"Sky Dream" ~ Poetry in Translation

Image courtesy of NASA. Our new broadside series, "Poetry in Translation," highlights great literature from many places and many ages. We are excited to begin in ancient China, around 800 C.E., with the "ghostly genius" poet Li Ho.

 A drawing of 9th century Chinese poet Li Ho, from the book Wan hsiao tang-Chu chuang-Hua chuan (晩笑堂竹荘畫傳), published in 1921.

His fabulous poem Sky Dream, translated here by Jeff Schwaner, looks at the moon (a "toad's eye," a "jade wheel") and at what the moon might see from its vantage point high above earth's beauty and trouble.

"Sky Dream," by Li Ho, translated by Jeff Schwaner.

Our broadside, 10" square, was designed, hand-set in metal type, and letterpress printed here at St Brigid Press. The text is set in Bembo, a venerable typeface descended from 15th century Venetian originals, with title and author name in Garamond Italic. Sky Dream is printed upon tissue-thin Unryu paper, which literally means "Cloud Dragon Paper" and is made from the fibers of the kozo plant. The Unryu is backed by light grey Stonehenge paper, and framed by a night-sky-colored mat. This broadside was produced in a limited edition of 32 numbered copies. $15 each.

To order, please click HERE to enter our online store.

For more information about the poem, the poet, and the translator, please click HERE.

With thanks, and all best,

St Brigid Press

Printed with the Challenge 15MP proof press, onto tissue-thin Unryu paper.

Sky Dream: paper-thin

With a circle mat-cutter, we designed the "moon."

The colophon is printed on the back, with penciled edition number.




Everything Falls In Place

DE broadside We are honored to announce the release of a letterpress printed broadside of Jeff Schwaner's poem "Drop Everything."

A moving meditation on the small moments that make up our lives, and the intimacy of truly knowing another being, "Drop Everything" is a poem of quiet beauty and power. Author of numerous volumes of outstanding poetry, Jeff Schwaner lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

We had the pleasure of setting his poem by hand, letter-by-letter and line-by-line, to manifest its loveliness in metal, ink, paper, and to share it with you. It is composed in Centaur type, a venerable typeface designed in 1914 by Bruce Rogers, and accompanied by accents in its companion italic face Arrighi. The paper is sumptuous "Holyoke," a very thick, cream-white cotton paper. Each broadside in this limited edition of 45 is numbered.

For more information about the poem (including the full text) and its author Jeff Schwaner, click HERE.

To order, click HERE.

With thanks, and all best, St Brigid Press

Handsetting the type for the broadside, letter-by-letter and space-by-space.

Letterpress printed on our Challenge 15MP proof press.

Each sheet, printed one-by-one.

DE title

Close-up of the hand-set colophon.

Close-up of the text.



"Hope is the thing with feathers..." Poetry Broadside

HOPE Broadside

Warm Summer Greetings from St Brigid Press!

We are inaugurating our SBP Poetry Broadside Series with a limited-edition print of this beloved poem by Emily Dickinson, decorated with an original block carving by SBP printer Emily Hancock. When Dickinson first penned this verse around 1861, America was in the initial throes of civil war, and through the century-and-a-half since, its themes of courage and ever-available hope have remained relevant, revelatory, and inspiring. (Read the full text of the poem at the end of this post.)

The text-body of "Hope is the thing with feathers..." has been hand-set in Victor Hammer's wonderful American Uncial typeface, with hand-set Lombardic Capitals illuminating the opening word "Hope," in forest-green oil-based ink. The broadside is letterpress-printed with the 1914 Chandler and Price treadled press, on lush Rives 100% cotton mouldmade paper. Decorative Thai kozo-and-banana-bark paper frames the title and the carving. The decorative feather was hand-carved here at the Press, and printed on the Rives paper with warm brown ink. Ready for framing, the broadside is matted with forest-green acid-free board, and backed with sturdy acid-free foamboard (mat is lightly affixed to the backing board with archival artists' tape).

Produced in a limited edition of 40, with 30 available for purchase. $35 each. Finished size: 12"x16". To order, please go to the SBP Online Store. For more information, Contact Us.

With thanks, and good Summer wishes to all!

St Brigid Press

Hand-setting "Hope" with the lovely and historic Lombardic capitals typeface.

Letterpress printed with forest-greet ink onto Rives paper, mouldmade in France.

Hand-carving the feather (shown here highlighted with the warm-brown ink).

Close-up of printed carving, with colophon.


FULL TEXT of the poem by Emily Dickinson:

Hope is the thing with feathers That perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard; And sore must be the storm That could abash the little bird That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land, And on the strangest sea; Yet, never, in extremity, It asked a crumb of me.