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Charles Stein


Charles Stein, Hudson Opera House, April 2016; photo by Chris Funkhouser

Segue Series Reading at the Ear Inn, NYC, April 21, 1979

Complete Reading (29:38): MP3

Reading The Forest for the Trees, 1982

Complete Recording (30:53): MP3

Public Reading, May 1, 1994

Tivoli (1:04:05): MP3
Recorded by Chris Funkhouser

Segue Series Reading at Double Happiness, NYC, April 6, 2002

Complete Reading (36:57): MP3

Reading at Rhinebeck, June 23, 2016

A note on the readings at the Rhinebeck

During Spring 2016 Charles Stein and I decided to embark on a recording project together, which blossomed into producing an elaborate multi-decade retrospective of his published poetry (as well as some unpublished and improvised sound poems). We met regularly at my home studio between June and September, recording more than eighteen hours of theforestforthetrees (an overarching name given to the body of his work), including a copious amount of material from a series of books titled Views from Tornado Island as well as his collection The Hat Rack Tree and From Mimir's Head. These readings are the first in a sequence of additions Stein and I intend to add to PennSound's archive. Stay tuned!

—Chris Funkhouser
Rhinebeck, December 2016

The Virgo Poem (1966) (4:50): MP3

From Witch-Hazel (1972), Poems & Glyphs (1973), and Parts Other Parts (1974) (42:08): MP3

  • From Witch-Hazel
  • The Fool (:20)
  • The Bottom of This 4 (:46)
  • (from) Stone Series . . . (1:47)
  • From Poems & Glyphs
  • The Danger (5:10)
  • The Cumulous (5:20)
  • From Parts Other Parts
  • (from) A Book of Confusion (10:48)
  • Parts (14:30)
  • Point Sphinx (30:19)

Horse Sacrifice (complete) (1976) (45:09): MP3

  • The Hut (:05)
  • Artemis (7:04)
  • Mint (10:34)
  • The Artisan (14:50)
  • Bus Trip (20:25)
  • (from) Horse Sacrifice (31:24)
  • More Elephants (33:54)
  • RK's Elephants (37:02)
  • The End of the Elephants (37:59)
  • Song (39:00)
  • The Language (40:46)

Reading at Rhinebeck, July 11, 2016

Works from 1980s (36:36): MP3

  • (Untitled) "The green marbles cluster . . . " (1980) (:21)
  • A Conspectus (1980) (5:15)
  • The Bird (mid 1980s) (10:57)
  • A Night of Thought (1987) (complete)
  • Sad Trees Rows (13:39)
  • Hodos (17:04)
  • The Man (19:59)
  • The Luncheon (21:40)
  • from theforestforthetrees (22:39)

From The Hat Rack Tree (1982-1994) (1:04:53): MP3

  • Pages from First Forest (0:00)
  • The Null Credential (9:12)
  • A Parmenides Machine (12:00)
  • Being Mice (17:06)
  • The Sad Machines (25:19)
  • Song (36:29)
  • The Tower (38:33)
  • Entity (39:19)
  • The Backhoe (40:08)
  • Later Poems from The Sad World (41:35)
  • Concordance (52:20)
  • The Hoopoe (56:07)
  • They Took The Car Away (1:01:14)
  • The Hat Rack Tree (1:03:17)

Reading at Rhinebeck, July 14, 2016

From theforestforthetrees (49:07): MP3

  • Brief talk about theforestforthetrees (0:00)
  • The King's Collector (1992) (2:35)

Alacrity Probity (1999) (32:06): MP3

In Angioplasm (8:16): MP3

  • In Angioplasm (1999) (0:00)
  • In Angioplasm Autocommentary (1999) (2:44)

Uncollected Unsound Poems (2004) (10:01): MP3

Reading at Rhinebeck, July 20, 2016

Hieroglyphics (26:44): MP3

From Mimir's Head (2000) (1:06:49): MP3

  • A Little Off Somewhere
  • The Hat Rack Tree (:21)
  • Here (2:07)
  • 666 Characters for Brad Kenney (4:02)
  • The Fan (5:04)
  • How High the Moon (6:12)
  • Someone Calls on the Hotel Phone to Say (9:22)
  • "I will not enter the gate . . ." (11:05)
  • Past Being's Thrall
  • (untitled) "Color's Being . . ." (11:32)
  • Three Lectures on Cosmogony (12:09)
  • Crow's Head Run (13:23)
  • 3 Public Matters (19:17)
  • Something from an Outside
  • (untitled) "First it was a panther . . ." (23:57)
  • Megalith (27:20)
  • untitled ("The mind behind the head . . .") (28:15)
  • untitled "The man . . ." (28:53)
  • From "Mimir's Head"
  • The Loons (29:16)
  • untitled ("Now I can do anything . . ." (30:00)
  • untitled ("All the mules have walked away . . .") (30:47)
  • The Power (31:54)
  • Ogdoad (32:23)
  • untitled ("not to deny . . .") (33:17)
  • untitled ("looking for the pages. . .") (33:55)
  • untitled ("the failure of the poets . . .") (34:34)
  • untitled ("my horoscope" . . .) (35:11)
  • untitled ("if it doesn't bite . . .") (35:29)
  • The Sampo (35:39)
  • Heart Lake (38:05)
  • Canto (41:08)
  • June Run (42:58)
  • The Hermit (49:55)
  • The Point of Names
  • The Point of the Point (55:13)
  • Pineal Matters (57:42)
  • And Sat Down (59:32)
  • Set Speaks (1:00:32)
  • Five Names (1:01:39)

Reading at Rhinebeck, July 22, 2016

Tarots (46:28): MP3

  • Talking about Tarots (0:00)
  • Tarots (2005)
  • Birds (2:00)
  • Ace of Birds
  • Two of Birds
  • Three of Birds
  • Four of Birds
  • Five of Birds
  • Six of Birds
  • Seven of Birds
  • Eight of Birds
  • Nine of Birds
  • Ten of Birds
  • Gift of Birds
  • Knower of Birds
  • Place of Birds
  • Speaker of Birds
  • Trees (10:04)
  • Ace of Trees
  • Two of Trees
  • Three of Trees
  • Four of Trees
  • Five of Trees
  • Six of Trees
  • Seven of Trees
  • Eight of Trees
  • Nine of Trees
  • Ten of Trees
  • Gift of Trees
  • Place of Trees
  • Speaker of Trees
  • Knower of Trees
  • Rivers (17:57)
  • Ace of Rivers
  • Two of Rivers
  • Three of Rivers
  • Four of Rivers
  • Five of Rivers
  • Six of Rivers
  • Seven of Rivers
  • Eight of Rivers
  • Nine of Rivers
  • Ten of Rivers
  • Gift of Rivers
  • Knower of Rivers
  • Place of Rivers
  • Speaker of Rivers
  • Stones (26:06)
  • Ace of Stones
  • Two of Stones
  • Three of Stones
  • Four of Stones
  • Five of Stones
  • Six of Stones
  • Seven of Stones
  • Eight of Stones
  • Nine of Stones
  • Ten of Stones
  • Gift of Stones
  • Knower of Stones
  • Place of Stones
  • Speaker of Stones
  • Major Arcana (33:57)
  • The Fool
  • The Magician
  • The High Priestess
  • The Empress
  • The Emperor
  • Tradition
  • The Lovers
  • The Chariot
  • Strength
  • The Hermit
  • The Wheel of Fortune
  • Justice
  • The Hanged Woman
  • Death
  • Temperance
  • The Devil
  • The Tower
  • The Star
  • The Moon
  • The Sun
  • Awakening
  • The World

Reading at Rhinebeck, July 25, 2016

Many Hungers from the Gender Garden (2003) (17:24): MP3

Stroke (2001) (9:41): MP3

The Garuda Bird: A Poet's Fragment (2004) (20:40): MP3

Reading at Rhinebeck, August 2, 2016

Some Dreams (1989) (10:14): MP3

2016 Collector (52:09): MP3

  • Glissary (0:00)
  • The Rook (2:07)
  • Melanion (2:36)
  • The Empty Horse (3:26)
  • White Panther (4:44)
  • Tooth Fairy (6:24)
  • The Wall (8:15)
  • (untitled) "On one hour of dream . . ." (12:04)
  • (untitled) "Are you trying to make my being die? . . ." (13:32)
  • Cassandra's Cove (15:49)
  • Metaphors for Josie (18:19)
  • Disaster Areas (20:13)
  • Three Remembrances:
  • On The Weirdness of Dead Things (23:52)
  • Coordinates (27:28)
  • After Sandy Hook (31:14)
  • Four Cuts for Alana (34:21)
  • Kabbala (43:45)

Reading at Rhinebeck, August 12, 2016

Codger Poems (20:28): MP3

  • The Mind of Money (:04)
  • Information Rant (3:49)
  • Touchy Stones (6:48)
  • (untitled) Electro-magnetic micro-swarms and macro . . . (9:28)
  • (untitled) One more sleep load . . . (12:54)
  • The Gargoyl (13:54)
  • Twin Lakes Goddess Poem (17:07)

Readings of Views from Tornado Island at Rhinebeck, August 14 through September 3, 2016

Views from Tornado Island 1, Money Has An Enemy, Ring One (1:14:55): MP3

  • 1 Black Box Was The Bank Itself (:06)
  • 2 Pass to Zero (3:54)
  • 8 Once in Embryo (7:18)
  • 9 Sex Among Affinitants: The Gender Garden (10:38)
  • 10 To Continue (13:40)
  • 11 Cosmology (16:51)
  • 12 Macanthropos (21:51)
  • 13 Ontology (25:08)

Views from Tornado Island 3: Money Has An Enemy, Ring Three (continued from 1):MP3

  • 1 Wrench Boy, Wrench Girl Speak(s) (29:07)

Views from Tornado Island 4: Money Has An Enemy, Ring Four (continued from 1):MP3

  • 1 Take One: The Broken Bank About to be Busted (33:29)
  • 2 Take Two: Quest for the Broken Mountain (40:24)
  • 3 The Mind of Money (43:25)
  • 4 Monsoon (50:11)
  • 5 There's a Reason for Everything in the Old Hotel (55:22)
  • 6 An Aberration Sets in 'Long About Now (1:00:38)
  • 7 Who We Are (1:03:43)
  • 8 What Happens to Europe (1:08:14)

Views from Tornado Island 5: Give Me A Lever and a Place to Stand (41:58): MP3

  • 1 The Mole Made A Noise (:24)
  • 2 Melee was Puzzled by Black Lake (3:20)
  • 3 Violet Saw the Mole (6:20)
  • 4 Black Box is the Mother of Melee (10:10)
  • 5 A Wrench in the Shape of a Small Boy (12:52)
  • 6 The Zoo in Winter (16:18)
  • 7 Jaguar Stuck his Paw Through the Cage Bars (19:15)
  • 8 No Tongue Wagged (21:47)
  • 9 There is no Final Word (25:38)
  • 10 No More Ontologies (30:19)
  • Interval (33:11)
  • 11 Circle in a Square in a Circle in a . . . (38:27)

Views from Tornado Island 9: The Mouse Eats Cat Food But The Cat's Bowl Is Broken (1:16:14): MP3

  • Foreword (:26)
  • 1 What Blocks the Light? (3:08)
  • 2 Smooth Talk (8:51)
  • 3 (untitled) "The cat and mouse/are playing cat and mouse ..." (11:45)
  • 4 Intricacies of Unsnap (14:51)
  • Interval (18:45)
  • 5 Libidinal Prognostications (19:25)
  • Interval (22:55)
  • 6 (untitled) "Scatter the particles of Crystal . . ." (23:43)
  • 12 Ghosts (26:09)
  • 13 (untitled) "So much for obstacles…" (31:21)
  • 13 (sic: actually 14) (untitled) "Worse than fog . . ." (35:43)
  • Interval (40:06)
  • 15 (untitled) "African Rattle went on strike . . ." (41:16)
  • 17 Obliquity's Entre (46:37)
  • 18 Obliquity's Obliquity (50:43)
  • 19 A Veritable Maze of Dispossession (56:07)
  • 20 (untitled) Wrench Boy and Wrench Wench/together assume the Presidency . . ." (1:00:36)
  • 24 (untitled) "The maze of Happenstance is never silence. . ." (1:06:30)
  • 22 (untitled) "Jaguar studied dispossession in others . . ." (1:11:31)

Views from Tornado Island 11: Never Tire of the Road (2:16:11): MP3

  • 1 The Scene is Set or Scenes are Sets (:09)
  • 2 Thus Spoke Wrench Boy (4:18)
  • Interval (9:08)
  • 3 The Labyrinth (9:57)
  • Interval (14:31)
  • 4 (untitled) "My silence might be your Hammerhead . . ." (15:42)
  • 5 Black Light Casts White Shadows (20:49)
  • 6 Victory (26:48)
  • 7 (untitled) I pondered . . . (32:46)
  • 8 Ontology Forks (37:01)
  • 9 The Second Person (41:44)
  • 10 (untitled) "You cannot begin . . ." (46:54)
  • Interval (51:17)
  • 11 (untitled) "Jacinth sat by Long River . . ." (53:00)
  • 12 Of Wrench Boy's Ontic Quality (56:48)
  • 13 The Philosophical Zombies (1:03:03)
  • 14 (untitled) "Wrench Boy's zombies were out of focus . . ." (1:09:19)
  • Interval (1:14:06)
  • 15 Occupy Poughkeepsie: Waiting for the Police to Arrive (1:15:25)
  • 16 Truth as the Night Wanes (1:19:43)
  • 17 The Old Hotel Hired a New Doorkeep (1:24:27)
  • Interval (1:29:25)
  • 18 (untitled) "The Gorge subtending Happenstance . . ." (1:30:09)
  • 19 (untitled) "Your garden wall . . ." (1:36:38)
  • 20 The Country of Courage (1:40:06)
  • 21 Deep storage as The Night Room (1:45:49)
  • 22 All The Wrong Questions (1:49:56)
  • Interval (1:55:40)
  • 23 (untitled) "Plotinus exacerbates focus . . ." (1:57:42)
  • 24 (untitled) "Narcolepsy has ritual properties . . ." (2:03:03)
  • 25 (untitled) "I'm excited about your opals," said the Fence . . ." (2:07:48)
  • 26 (untitled) "At the end of the road, a doorkeep . . ." (2:11:19)

Views from Tornado Island 12: There Where You Do Not Think to be Thinking (1:20:42): MP3

  • 1 Heredity (:14)
  • 6 With Tobacco Woman (5:09)
  • Interval (11:03)
  • Interval (12:20)
  • Interval (for Maximus) (14:02)
  • Interval (18:51)
  • 17 Money Has an Enemy (19:40)
  • 18 All the Young Philosophies (24:06)
  • 19 The Factory (30:49)
  • 20 The Grand Concordat (36:41)
  • Interval (41:25)
  • 21 The Visitor (43:24)
  • 22 Weirdlings and Waistrels (49:32)
  • 23 A Further Report from our Visitor with Remarks on Telestics (54:14)
  • 24 The Cat's Bowl (1:03:47)
  • Interval: Elsewhere (1:08:29)
  • 25 Mind Games (1:11:30)
  • 26 The Kingdom (1:17:32)

Views from Tornado Island 13: Views from Tornado Island (2012) (1:38:25): MP3

  • 1 Weather Changes (:07)
  • 2 An Actual Nothing Written Back Down (4:18)
  • Interval (8:25)
  • 3 Signs (8:42)
  • 4 Establishing Place (13:19)
  • 5 The Two Towers (20:44)
  • 6 The Complaint of Lady Hammerhead and its Dire Sequelae (28:12)
  • 7 Entities from Elsewheres (33:09)
  • 8 The Door to the River: The Matter of Waters (39:18)
  • 9 Cracked Eggs (43:46)
  • 10 Skewed Lattices (50:09)
  • 11 Paleo-Ontology (55:19)
  • 12 Inundation by Absence Beneath a Menacing Eye (59:32)
  • 13 Door Brick (1:04:50)
  • 14 The Hustings (1:10:22)
  • 15 White Oxygen (1:14:41)
  • 16 Being as Its Colonies (1:21:06)
  • Interval (1:25:05)
  • Interval (1:27:32)
  • 17 (First Recension): One Act to a Cup (1:28:51)
  • 17 (Second Recension): The Dog at the Dance (1:31:53)
  • 18 A Distant Giant (1:35:22)

Reading at Rhinebeck, September 3, 2016

  • Improvised Sound Piece 1 (7:53): MP3
  • Improvised Sound Piece 2 (9:07): MP3
  • I Wanted To Stay In My Home (4:14): MP3
  • Improvised Sound Piece 3 (4:50): MP3

These sound recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to the author. © 2016 Charles Stein. Used with permission of Charles Stein. Distributed by PennSound.