P. Inman

1995 • 64 pp. • $10.00
ISBN: 9781882022243

Purchase from Small Press Distribution

“P. Inman’s mind is a thouroughly attached organ. There are no places to escape to or from in relation to its consideration, its inclusion. His work is liberating: images crystallize then overflow their frames, the ends of lines complete phrases whose content is picked up– goes off– on the next line in sudden tangential angles. P. Inman’s writing exists simultaneously in the realms of formal experimentation…social and cultural witness…and political, economic, institutional critique…”
—Diane Ward

VEL makes it clear once again that without Peter Inman’s work a whole register of our language would not exist. It comes to us via his uniquely musical intelligence, his compound mind’s ear, opening a range from ‘’ to ‘forks of ponders’ to ‘Their every brink of mouth.’ This work is as uncompromised and uncompressible in its lush detail as all linguistic weather beyond dichotomies of sense-nonsense. What Tractarian Wittgensteins might say must be passed over in silence Inman’s work realizes as the possibility of a third term, n e w sense. When I read ‘teak of near eskimo’ and ‘he couldn’t hide the mind blanched past.’ I marvel.
—Joan Retallack

“Inman’s attention is unique. He’s a maker with respect for materials. There’s no excess & no lack. We need to learn to live like these writings.”
—Rod Smith


P. Inman was born in 1947 and raised on Long Island. From 1980 to 2005, he worked at the Library of Congress, and since 2005 as labor rep and consultant. His books have included: Ocker(Tuumba Press, 1982), RED SHIFT and CRISS CROSS (Roof Books, 1988 & 1994), VEL (O Books, 1995), ad finitum (if p then q, 2008), AT. LEAST. (Krupskaya, 2009), and PER SE (Burning Deck, 2012). He resides in Maryland with the poet Tina Darragh.


From : / ” glimpse” /

my: eye: itched: flat:
the: grass: it: slends: behind:
tip: of: the: tongue: flooded: by:
tack: steck:
emptied: bird: punctuation: rules:
some: content: left: from: temper-
ature: along: one: woman:
flak: of: footsteps:
sounded: ball: except: everything:
roe: distinctions
only: Colo.: finched: because:
she: wrote: it:
the: overcast: in: the: package:
lurled: crow: miniscules:
whatever: de: Kooning: saw:
surrounded: to: small: talk:
soda: build: than: imagination:
the: landscape: between:
how: much: you’d: want

celled sifts: (pg.2)
a paper: spread of: strokes a: stream career:
the mane: her parve: of land:
ice dutter
Vermeer as: the far:
part through: flavored wall:
the same: daughter waned: to him:
build stream:
bits of: rock steach: in woods:
their span: each line:
while it: missed her: size in:
beau’m vert:
an English: lecture rubbed: into cells:
how i: imagine her: lank thinks:
Lake Champlain: a single: bourgeois outset:
utterly left: from it:
my leg: spots by: a dream

the spread she stood at: the window talk flooded in: (pg.3)
he’s thinking of the one: difference some content left
them: as shoreline puffed into diction: character traits
as some interruption: speech cattling off of fingertips:
my glance maned into birthrate: of mind parted a
unit: of length before she remembered: length walled
with murdered people: a narrow of Billie Whitelaw

nothing but painter along: her (pg.4)
headache every step: to my arm a:
midst that its prim: the far part from:
workmen syruped from history: each
sight into daughter: in her thinnest paper
a bankers finch eye: the river
shapes he: existed at all once: last rice
of act: the only family anywhere: before
they think from: distance left tarred
write: plunks in a cadillac: the back of her:
blood given to commonplace: simplist
outset the mind: they were built through:
women thicked to river: she was its midst:
at the expense of: the stronger work the:
cherokee a banker’s grist