Poem Sets New Printing Standard
From July to October 2010, Iowa City poet David Morice set himself a daunting task: to write a 100-page poem every day for 100 days. Entitled ‘Poetry City Marathon’, the poem was written as part of events to celebrate the naming of Iowa City as a City of literature by UNESCO (just like Melbourne).
The poet, who also goes by the name Dr Alphabet, completed the challenge he set himself, which is an amazing achievement in itself. Finding himself with a 10,000 page poem manuscript, he then set himself an even more unlikely goal: to get it published. An unlikely prospect, one might think, but the University of Iowa Libraries was up for it. Binding the book took 24 hours, and the result is a book 2 feet thick that can only be read with supporting blocks.
The University of Iowa Libraries website has an interesting piece on how they set about meeting the technical challenges of publishing such a book. Readers wishing to purchase their own copy can just forget about it already - there’s just one copy - but they can preview the poem (in 100-page increments) here.