FRAZER, Bonnie. The Village Scene. Sudbury: Water Row Press, 2000.
4to., black card wraps with overlaid white card, printed in red with social scene to upper cover and device to lower; folding insert with poem by the author's husband; unpaginated [xvi]; the odd spot, else fine.
Limited edition, number 14 of 150 copies signed by Frazer. Designed and produced by Jim Camp at the synaesthesia press during the summer of 2000.
A fascinating insight into life in Grenwich Village and gaslight poets during the height of the Beatnik generation. Told from Bonnie's perspective as a woman living through the movement in the shadow of her husband, the poet Ray Bremser. Her experiences of everyday life: "the leotards were so tight the customers could ogle at the waitresses" as well as with drugs and poverty, show her as perfectly marginalised by her infatuation with her husband: "my gums were getting unhealthy from not having a toothbrush…[but] after all I'd gotten the better deal in being Ray's wife." This marginalisation is one which is completely accepted by Frazer: "could I have taken a more active part in this decision making? Did I even want to? Maybe I was content to just be Ray's old lady and tag along?... We were living the life, things were happening fast. I had to believe when he said it was OK. Something about the awe other people felt for Ray was rubbing off on me, obliterating independent thought."
Frazer's own writing easily echos, if not enhances her male counterpart's: "his voice was sepulchral… the sound of a tunnel stone closing, so deep and hollow like the resonance of his cheeks where all of the back teeth were missing. His voice smoked out of his mouth heavy with nicotine and I thought it perfumed with poetry". Her writing is poetic, nostalgic, and her recollections of this period in her life provide a beautifully unique perspective on this period in American Literature.