Ossman, one of the four creators of The Firesign Theatre, three-time Grammy
nominees, known as “The Beatles of Comedy,” has been publishing poetry in
books, anthologies and magazines since his teen years.
the poems in Marshmallows & Despair were first heard on NPR’s All
Things Considered, the Firesign’s gold-medal-winning XM Satellite
program, Fools In Space, and the web’s Radio Free Oz.
internationally-celebrated radio writer-director, best known for The War of
the Worlds 50th Anniversary Production, Ossman has also produced
major programs with John Cage, Ray Bradbury and Norman Corwin. As “George
Tirebiter,” he ran a national comedy campaign for U.S. Vice-President in 1976,
is the voice of “Cornelius” in Pixar’s A Bug’s Life, and has adapted Agatha
Christie’s BBC Murders, Jean Cocteau’s Orpheus and an e. e.
cummings cabaret for stage.
was born Dec. 6, 1936 in Santa Monica, California, graduated from Columbia
University, and has lived on Whidbey Island, Washington, with his wife and
partner, Judith Walcutt, for thirty years. They have two sons, Orson, a
filmmaker, and Preston, a musician. He is currently finishing a second
memoir, Fighting Clowns.
Marshmallows & Despair by David Ossman
David Ossman's shocking, awesome, poetic coverage of 21st Century War and Politics, tales of neo-noir nights in strange places, poems of aging, dying, and seeking refuge.
This definitive collection celebrates Ossman’s 79th birthday and features a captivating cast that includes Beat St. Jack, Banana Clip Republicans, Funny Skydivers, as well as an Elegy to Rock Snot.
You’ll be sold on Presidential Butts In Butter, exposed to Heisenberg at Holmes Harbor, visit the House of Garden Gnomes, and celebrate the Tulku’s Birthday.
Enjoy a healthy dose of Ossman's Firesign humor matched with his own outrage, anguish and hope.
ISBN 978-0-9903565-7-8 96 pages $14.95 5.5"x8.5" perfect bound, paper
You can read while you chat while you vedge while you phone while you eat ‘cause you can from a can on the can in your van on the lam from Black Hawks overhead in your head.
Get a grip, it’s your trip, you can game while you smile while you colon close parentheses smile, watch DVDs in your BVDs 24/7 on line takeout in a 7-11 neon heaven you’re right at home where the Smiling Slushy Guy who helps on the fly, takes out each Black Hawk that’s landin’ in your head.
Listen in, your phone is ringin’ Dragnet, it’s ringin’ Star Wars, it’s ringin’ 8 Mile, listen Sk8erBoi, it’s downloadin’ your stock market investment portfolio Happy Funds Account while you freekin’ vedge! While you duck the sneaky feelin’ you’re a gamer loser gamer over under heavy fire from the Black Hawks still circlin’ in your head.
Hey, you can still sing karaoke with some Okie if you wanna from Okefenokee to Old Smokey on the little color screen big as the book of matches you don’t carry ‘cause you’re not smokin’ like you used to, no sir, you’re drinkin’ water from Jakarta and jokin’ on the phone to Joan, you know it’s Joan ‘cause there’s her picture, bright as a two-billion-year-old galaxy clear as midnight on the Tigris there on the little screen on the foldable phone that rings and rings like a man in a music-box and rings all night like a sax singin’ in a subway where you dream you’re joggin’ in your Vicky underwear under where the Black Hawks keep stalkin’ the last pockets of resistance in the wireless wonderworld of your post-war pomme-de-terre.
Reading David Ossman is like
finding yourself caught up in a whirlwind of whimsy and dark augury. Imagine
you're trying to run through a dust devil, arms flailing and hair flying and
Ossman's poems are like looking up through the funnel and seeing the sun.
David Ossman is an acute observer
who makes flesh the Walpole dictum: "The world is a tragedy to those who
feel, but a comedy to those who think."
Bart Baxter Poet, Pilot,
World Traveller & Master of Ceremonies
"We all knew there was a poetry in the madness
of Firesign Theater, but there’s also an inspired madness in the poetry of
Firesign’s David Ossman. Marshmallows & Despair reveals the heart
that has always been at the center of Ossman’s work, changing the way one
thinks about his comedy, and all comedy for that matter. With a
light touch and delirious passion, Ossman takes us on a journey that is both
personal and universal. Transcendent."
Douglas Rushkoff author of Present
compelling diary of the first years of the century, these genial and biting
poems remind us of the uniquely literary dimension of Ossman's old group,
Firesign Theatre, and can be read alongside the broadcasts and albums of their
Braddock Cornell University, Modernist Studies Book Prize winner.
"Funny, deeply layered, and
John Goodman Unforgettable
film, television, stage, and voice actor