Henry Miller Collectibles

Just for fun and for those who haven't seen one, a few Henry Miller collectibles from my own collection.

My favorites, without a doubt, are the Keimeisha editions of Tropic of Cancer, Black Spring, and Tropic of Capricorn from Tokyo. These are second Keimeisha editions from 1956. The firsts of the same were published in 1953.

Henry Miller, Keimeisha editions

Since I don't collect for the monetary value, but for my own imaginative participation in a bit of literary history, these Keimeisha editions are especially nice to have because they are photographic knockoffs of 1930's Obelisk Press editions, warts and all. And they are not so yellowed and brittle with acid-paper age that I haven't been able to hold them in my hand for a cover to cover read whenever I've felt like it over the years.

Of course, the back -- the Japanese front -- contains the tag, from which I can read nothing but the price.

Henry Miller, Keimeisha editions And here's a copy of the Obelisk Press: Paris second edition (October 1938) of Black Spring that is the original for the 1950s Keimeisha editions. Henry Miller, Black Spring, Obelisk Press: Paris, 1938

And certainly not to be missed is the ultimate in phallic publishing house logos:

Henry Miller, Black Spring, Obelisk Press: Paris, 1938

This particular Obelisk Press Black Spring I've had for a couple decades now and have only dared read -- very carefully -- once. I'm saving the second read for my 90th birthday, should I be fortunate enough to live longer than did Miller. If it falls to pieces then, what do I care?

rri (February 19, 2005)

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