New York: Pantheon Books, 1994. Art Spiegelman. First Edition. Tall Octavo. (22 cm x 14 cm) 111 pp. ills. Half green buckram cloth with dark green black blindstamped illustrated boards. Illustrated dust jacket. Dark red felt endpapers. Front endpapers illustrated and inscribed by the artist. Owner gift inscription in red pen on half-title. "RB" stamped to the upper right corner on half-title. Fine. Item #112
"The Wild Party" serves as both an epic poem to the Roarding 20s and a ballad to its inevitable end. To paraphrase a line from the poem's bon vivant of a writer, Joseph Moncure March -- eventually, as with all great wild and fun things, eventually, the cops are going to rush in and put a stop to it. (In this case, the cops would be the Depression.) Often compared to the song "Frankie and Johnny", the poem seems to be ready to set to music. March, a protege of Robert Frost, was a child of that glorious "Lost Generation" and would provide the youth culture of the 1920s with a poem that depicted it sincerely. It is the age-old, tragic tale of two star-crossed lovers, drumming to the beat of hot jazz and dirty limericks in couplet. It is set among dark speakeasies of easy booze and drugs and violence amid trashy rooms peopled by sexualized characters in flamboyant clothes. It is no wonder the artist, Art Spiegelman, responsible for the "Maus" graphic novels, chose to illustrate this glorious and brazen piece of literature. Since its very modest debut in 1928, the poem has only grown in cult status. So much so, the writer, William S. Burroughs is known to have said that this fun and filthy little poem, changed his life. Heavily illustrated in black and white drawings. Inscribed by the artist with scarce, original drawing.