Delivering his eleventh book of poetry, Merrill Gilfillan is "… a poet whose work has the sure-footed, self-referential freshness of a Mayakovsky or a Gertrude Stein." —San Francisco Review of Books
Merrill Gilfillan was born in Ohio in 1945 and raised there. He attended the University of Michigan, graduating in 1967, where he won the Major Hopwood Prize for poetry in his senior year. He attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop for two years, studying with Ted Berrigan, Anselm Hollo, and George Starbuck, among others. Gilfillan's recent publications include Red Mavis (2014) and Talk across Water: Stories Selected and New (2019), both by Flood Editions, and a book of poems, Stars Seen Then, from Partly Press (2019). He lived and worked in New York City for eight years, and then moved to Colorado, where he wrote several books of sketches from the Great Plains, including Magpie Rising, which won a PEN award. He now makes his home in Asheville, North Carolina.
Adventures in Poetry began publishing in 1968 as a mimeographed “little magazine,” and continued through 1976 with individual pamphlets, featuring work by Ted Berrigan, William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Bernadette Mayer, Frank O’Hara, James Schuyler, John Ashbery, Anne Waldman, and many others. After a long hiatus, it began publishing books by established and new innovative writers that are available exclusively through Zephyr Press.
"Gilfillan is a storyteller whose appeal is more mystical than realistic." — ALA Booklist
“Gilfillan has run his cosmic vacuum cleaner vision over most of space and time and rearranged the contents of the bag into poems which are truly generative. If these images won’t jog your consciousness out of its planned itinerary, you’re locked in like a cog railroad…. This is American poetry via the Orion Nebula.” — Abraxas