By William Roth
Tipperary, Ireland: Coracle Books, 2011. Edition of 95.
4.125 x 5.75"; 8 pages. Photocopy with letterpress. Sewn pamphlet binding. Paper wrappers with title on front cover. Color frontispiece tip-in of cigar image. Slipped into acetate pocket.
A short story about friendship and a last cigar.
Colophon: "An edition of 95 copies with a few proofs on the occasion of the author's ninety-fifth birthday in September 2011."
Erika van Horn: "William Roth turned 95 last September. The Toscano book was a birthday gift from us to him. He had written the piece some years before on the occasion of a friend's death, and since he and Simon shared a love of cigars, which neither of them can smoke anymore, he gave Simon the text to read. We loved it.
"He has been involved with the arts and with politics for his entire life. ... A graduate of Yale, he started The Colt Press with Jane Grabhorn while still a student. He sort of always wanted to be a writer but instead was a businessman who supported the arts in innumerable ways, with scholarships, subsidies and purchases both in the USA and in Ireland. ... He ran unsuccessfully for governor of California.
"A full and wonderful life … not the history of your usual book artist!"