Cover image for M: writings, '67-'72
M: writings, '67-'72
Cage, John.
Personal Author:
First paperback edition.
Physical Description:
217 pages ; 21 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3553.A32 M2 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



Mainly mesostics inspired by music, mushrooms, Marcel Duchamp, Merce Cunningham, Marshall McCluhan, etc. and includes "Mureau"- - composed from the writings of Henry David Thoreau. "Ordinary people brood over their failings and try to correct them; talent puts its failings to work. John Cage is not a powerful logician or rigorous thinker in the linear sense, but that has not kept him from being widely regarded, at age 60, as the most disturbingly original musical mind (if not the best composer) that America has produced since Charles Ives..Cage's most characteristic compositions probably stand slight chance of outliving him by much. They are in essence conceptual: uncollectable and unpreservable, gaily but deliberately writ on water. Not so his books. In 'Silence, ' 'A Year From Monday' and now 'M, ' the latest installment in his diary series, we have the solid, seizable stuff of art, whether the antiartist likes that or not: Cage caught."-- Donal Henahan, The New York Times Book Review "A fascinating, maddening, charming miscellany . . . set in over 700 different typefaces, with illustrations and word-drawings adding an esoteric zest . . . It all seems abstruse, but attuned readers could enjoy Cage's high humor while soaking in his penetrating insights and anecdotes intended to 'unstructure' bourgeois society"-Publishers Weekly.

Author Notes

Composer John Milton Cage, Jr., is best known for his avant-garde music, including pieces such as Imaginary Landscape No. 4 (1951) in which 12 radios are turned on intermittently. His 1943 premiere concert of percussion buzzers, pottery and scrap metal, all chosen for their potential sound.

Cage was born in Los Angeles in 1912 and studied music privately, becoming a teacher at the Chicago School of Design in 1941. Between 1944 and 1966, he was musical director at Merce Cunningham and Dance Co., and in 1949 he won a Guggenheim fellowship.

Cage wrote Virgil Thompson: His Life and Music (1959). His essays and lectures on music were collected into several books, including Silence: Selected Lectures and Writings (1961) and A Year from Monday: New Lectures and Writings (1967).


Table of Contents

Diary: How to Improve the World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse) Continued 1968 (Revised)
62 Mesostics re Merce Cunningham
36 Mesostics Re and Not Re Marcel Duchamp
Diary: How to Improve the World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse) Continued 1969
Six Mesostics (Present; On the windshield of a new Fiat for James K. and Carolyn Brown; In Memoriam S.W.; July 13, 1972; For A.C. on his 70th birthday; Ten years before sixty-seven)
Diary: How to Improve the World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse) Continues 1970-71
Mushroom Book
25 Mesostics Re and Not Re Mark Tobey
Diary: How to Improve the World (You Will Only Make Matters Worse Continued 1971-72