R.I.P. Seamus Cooney (1 Viewer)

I found out today that Seamus Cooney died in December. His work on Bukowski's letters for Black Sparrow Press has been invaluable to me over the years. My copies are full of underlining, dog ears and Post-it notes. I distinctly remember buying the first volume when it came out and cracking it open on a sandune on San Francisco Bay.

I also used to do business with him and his Celery City Books. Having been associated with Black Sparrow, he had some unique items and was fair in his pricing.

I’ve held on to this piece of gossip for a while, but now that Seamus has passed, I’m gonna share it for posterity.

Occasionally I’d see a Bukowski book out there inscribed from Bukowski to Cooney. One day I asked him about a particular book and this is what he told me:

“Mike, Believe it or not, I have no memory of seeing that copy of that book. John Martin says it was one of several such (several he had B inscribe for me).. I wonder who has it for sale? If you feel able to ask him, don’t mention me or John …It is many decades ago now and I do not rule out a total failure of memory, and yet I remember quite a few other things from back then.”

You can find his obit here. It’s got some great photographs of him over the years and a nice bio. An true Irishman in and out.

That's sad to hear. About 10 years or so ago I purchased his full kit of The Buk/Purdy Letters, including a comb-bound proof and other items. He tossed in a prospectus that he inscribed to me. If I can get a good photo of it, I'll post it (my printer/scanner doesn't work anymore because my replacement computer doesn't have the requisite drivers and HP doesn't maintain the drivers I'd need).
Seamus had a great run, am still sad to hear. I owned that book Pogue mentioned, it was a Longshot Pomes, which someone else now owns. The books of letters are unsung treasures in the Buk canon, highly recommended.

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