Sunday, September 15, 2019

Tip of the Knife, Issue 33

From the very first issue posted in May 2010, 
Tip of the Knife has always been visually sharp and verbally smart and bold, 
hewing to its mantra, “Draw blood or go home.” 
Draw out and draw with your life force or take your tools home. We’re not interested.

Bill DiMichele (1952-2019) was but a handful of artists 
(and an even smaller number of editors and publishers) 
who saw with eye, ear, skin, and tongue, 
who moved in and out of image and word and sound 
like our diaphragms move in and out of breath, 
like our blood circulates toes to brain.

That was how he was, who he was, 
and we see, hear, feel, and taste that in the work of these nine poets, 
and even more so—ten fold—in the work of all the artists 
in the full run of Tip of the Knife
a run that leaves us invigorated and not breathless, 
awash in the adrenaline of unbridled creativity. 
Read this issue—see through it—then go back to the beginning 
and see through all the issues. 
Your vision will be sharper for it.

You will be missed, Bill, by poets from around the world, 

but then again, this journal, your body of work, is too large to miss. 
So we’re glad you’re still becoming, too significant, too large with us, 
and as long as we bleed and breathe, you will always be with us. 
Let’s take a walk again—a run—along the edge.

Love you Bill, Julie, and Will!
Best, Crag (aka Chillrag)

*Look for a special issue of Tip of the Knife in May, 2020
for the 10th anniversary of the first issue,
followed by a a tribute to Bill which will include a selection of his work.


Andrew Topel
Cecelia Chapman
David Chirot
Joel Chace
John Mingay
Mark Young
Scott Davenport
Vernon Frazer
Volodymyr Bilyk


Andrew Topel

Comment from Bill in an email to Andrew: "beautiful structures- true melding of shape and letters"







Cecelia Chapman

Comment from Bill in an email to Cece: "really interesting- we don't get many videos so they're really exciting when we can watch one.

A short video from Club Paradise, Tears in the Night with Jeff Crouch: 

David Chirot

Comment from Bill in an email to David: "Your new work is beautiful. Glad to see you’re still working."






Joel Chace

Comment from Bill in an email to Joel: "good to see you back on the TOK."

Conceived as much visually as textually.  They're from a sequence entitled "Heaveng."

Non-Euclidean Ventures  19-25


The gentleman burst into a flood of tears

and said, in a voice broken by emotion,

“He christened his youngest child, sir,

with a toasting fork.”

Memory’s tyranny


The entire cosmos was transformed

                                                                                                                                into a vast grid

                                                                of luminous circuitry,

a computer dedicated to solving

the riddle of its own existence.



In an ecstasy of deliverance

                                               I clasped his neck, and felt that now I need not

                                               go back into that twilight room with its bed and the mystery

behind its curtains.

                                     The work thinks of the creator   


Because they lived atop

                                                         burial caves, they adored

                                                                                                               their dead in different ways.

Diamond’s father


                                           He possessed ubiquity and conceived

                                                                      himself riding upon his own back,

not certain if he was the carrier or

the carried.

Many can wait many


                                                                        The soul resembles a gray ball

                                                                                                             of cloud

which turns over, like a pumpkin, instead

of walking.

If you flew better, you’d see better


                                           The radio is on

                                           in the empty


              Which you will probably say, but can’t write down

John Mingay

Comment from Bill in an email to John: "beautiful structures, various scales, i think, bright bursting colors. interesting connections. well well well..."

Well, well, well! - a vispo triptych combining digitally processed images of Abhaneri Step Well in Rajasthan, India, and local mots trouvés from a pharmacy, a working men's club (thanks to Johnny Brown) and a domestic toilet. The juxtaposition of distant and near is intended to connect with the Dalai Lama's assertion that we should all visit somewhere new at least once a year, and the increasing scientific understanding of the mental wellbeing that comes of doing so.

Wellwellwell (01)

Wellwellwell (02)

Wellwellwell (03)

Mark Young

Comment from Bill in an email to Mark: "good to hear from you and the voice of your work; love the reference to dr benway, i've been reading burroughs since something like 1970. so we're excited to publish your work in the next issue."

From an ongoing series called The Comedians:

A demarcation dispute

Aviator shades


Dr. Benway's on a roll


Scott Davenport

Comment from Bill in an email to Scott: "loved your poetry- it has a depth that transcends."

abundant salad bar

the light's just right
everything's leafy
fig and seed
twig and morsel
everyone's getting off
including me

records of sand

details of all changes through time
hours long
more a recorded memory 
than a thought or dream
water reflecting weird color 
and girls in hallways or stairways
like waves 
into different zones connected
by nothing
time changing 
speeds up or slows down 
depending on sand 
the wind, the quality of the surf
makes me feel 
i should be two people
heather, zuma and point dume


unwelcme rock (?) gods

no offense to sound
built by man but 
pls not this dream

a castle of sound
built by billionaire
soft rockers

full reign of sound
over memories
no longer pure

drug adled canyon sound
canceled out replaced
with arena glow

childhood finding sound
in light through trees 
slipping into the wrong hands

peace/rock discovery sound
25 yrs ago slowly and then quickly
becoming unintelligible 


upper fernwood no. 1

crystals and candles
unearthly visions
amongst the twisted oaks
of the canyon
my third eye opens
i am expansive 
consciousness floating in the heavens
i am fucking the universe
which is bountiful


squirrel meditation mantra

i am a squirrel's poem
i am master of the squirrels
i write the squirrel sutra
i am the squirrel's muse
i am the reason squirrels exist
i am the song the squirrel sings
i am the shadow of the squirrel
i am the squirrel in the mirror
i am eternity in a squirrel
the golden squirrel speaks to me


oak forest venue

psychic love in 
a hillside oak woodland
we escaped the scorching 
white hot concrete 
and other lifestyle bummers
we sink past our minds
each expressing 
our consciousness to a candle
slip between dimensions 
slowly thinking about a wave
i touch some flowers 

they walk behind me

our hearts eyes minds are open 
an invitation to free love way out there 
cosmic, coming down from above
written out in a song about a blue cave painting
a peace sign painted on a rock
in a distant memory of malibu cyn 
we light a candle together and let love in


regional forecast

macho surfers learned jiu jistu it was their calling 
they used up all their data
checking the surf on the phone 
trying to remember the smell of
those old rocks exposed by low tide
sometimes you can smell it up in a 
canyon in the afternoon 
at one with the natural world on land
remembering the natural world before


untitled thinking of walt whitman

i am vapor 
formed by pressure systems
too complex to be 
understood completely
mostly ego fog
that evaporates when the sun 
shines brightly enough
and reformed
with afternoon wind which 
blows me into existence
but sometimes i would
rather just be blown
than blown into existence 
and to sit idly down in canyons
and along beaches


july p c h 
traffic and laughing colors
i breathe the ocean

august in water
melted completely mind was
pure love for a sec

sept alone with thoughts
color tiered evening skies
clear blue h20

october wind, man
waves churning and body gets
slammed into the sand

what constitutes myth
november's song and wind change
morning's cool poem

Vernon Frazer

Comment from Bill in an email to Vernon: "work is great, a stylistic continuity with the last work we did in #29."

Save the Last Dance for Memes




Volodymyr Bilyk

Comment from Bill in an email to Volodymyr: "interesting work- we'll be proud to publish it."

These pieces are based on Snapshots from Andy Warhol's A, a Novel as cleaned up from text by Derek Beaulieu taken out of concept and rearranged into distinct punctuational compositions revolving around the word "Pause". 

Lo and Behold  (1)

Lo and Behold  (2)

Lo and Behold  (3)

Lo and Behold  (4)

Lo and Behold  (5)

Lo and Behold  (6)

Lo and Behold  (7)

Only 2 more Tip of the Knife issues: Best of TOK and a last and final issue paying tribute to Bill DiMichele, both with an intro written by Crag Hill.

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