(Click image for full-size photo)

Alan Loney

Squeezing the Bones

[Wellington]: Hawk Press, 1978-83. Reed Books, RPRE 1983NZ. On loan from Dunedin Public Library.

Back in 1983, the law stated that if someone was publishing a book or periodical, three copies were to be sent to the New Zealand National Library (National Library Act 1965, Section 30A, amended 1994) for ‘legal deposit’. The books were sent at the publisher’s expense, including postage. Hawk Press owner Alan Loney disagreed with this practice because with only 15 copies printed of this poem about his father’s battle with cancer, it reduced his potential sales by a fifth. He sent one copy only; the authorities were not amused. This superb work was designed, printed and bound by Loney. The rather thick Richard de Bas handmade paper was damped for printing on a Vandercook SP20 proofpress. Private press owners will be pleased to learn that from 1 July 2004, only two copies will be required for deposit.