Monday, November 24, 2014
ALLAN KORNBLUM R.I.P.
Allan moved to Iowa City in 1970, the year after I left it, but when I returned for a visit I met him and we became instant friends, as folks often did with Allan. He was a witty, curious, ex-New Yorker who went on to become a pillar in the small press community in its burgeoning years and on into the present. He first published poetry, including mine, in his early small press magazine TOOTHPASTE out of which he created Toothpaste Press.
But when he moved to Minneapolis-St. Paul, he started a new small press publishing venture, COFFEE HOUSE, that challenged the major New York publishers in quality of the authors and consistent breakthroughs in style. Many of the books he edited and published garnered rave reviews in The New York Times and other major media.
When he published my 1997 poetry collection, CANT BE WRONG, I was interviewed for it on NPR's "Book Worm" show with Michael Silverblatt. The prestige of Allan's good taste is what drew that kind of attention to his authors and their books.
Here's the way his hometown newspaper (Minneapolis not New York) reported his passing. I think he'd be very pleased. My condolences to his wife, Cinda, and his daughters and extended family and friends. His energy and input into the world of writing and publishing will be sorely missed.