Daniel Bouchard
Diminutive Revolutions
Honolulu: Subpress Collective and A’ A’ Arts, 2000

Hearing Daniel Bouchard read some of the poems in Diminutive Revolutions earlier this year, we were all struck at how much this boy believes in the line break. You’d hear a slight but definite pause at each break—a way you never have heard anybody read in San Francisco. What’s up with that? We quizzed ourselves. Is it the James Schuyler thing? The Robert Creeley influence? The listener is thrown back, violently, into making sense of why, perhaps, it’s poetry, and not just a piece of prose with a jagged right-hand margin. On the page the poems give off a burnished glow, reminiscent of a log on fire. There’s an attention to detail-––the details of the senses, burning leaves, the thick redness of dogs’ tongues—we haven’t seen in San Francisco poetry since Ron Silliman left us. (Appropriately enough, one of the poems has Bouchard approaching Silliman to sign a book.) And there’s plenty of lyric exploration, the hum of city life, dramatic monologue, and the supreme nonsense of pun and word-play: "Reconnaissance when first consonants fail." If this is the School of Boston, I want to enroll with full accreditation, but would they let me in? Diminutive Revolutions (itself a punning title?) is a book of many moods, and hits every note from the hot to the cold with equal assurance, equal humility.
As I understand it, the members of the Subpress Collective pledge 1 or 10 per cent of their income each year, and with the results publish their own books or the manuscripts of others they admire, from within the Collective or not. A thrilling scheme, and the beauty of it is, from the outside no one will know whether you published your own book or whether you were merely ultra-worthy.

– Colin Strada