The press­man on the job

Pasatiempo - - THE INFINITY OF THINGS -

When Pasatiempo de­cided to put a poem by Layli Long Sol­dier on its cover, printer Tom Leech seemed the ideal man for the job. Leech, who recre­ated the mag­a­zine’s logo and Long Sol­dier’s words in let­ter­press type, is the di­rec­tor of the Palace Press at the New Mex­ico His­tory Mu­seum. For the cover, which he printed on a Van­der­cook proof press, Leech used a Cen­taur type­face, Palatino italic for the foot­notes, and, as he called it, “plain old black” ink.

At the press shop in the Palace of the Gov­er­nors’ court­yard, Leech prints oneof-a-kind let­ter­press edi­tions and broad­sides, or large printed posters, avail­able for sale to vis­i­tors — in­clud­ing more prints of the Long Sol­dier poem. His work continues a long poetic tra­di­tion of us­ing broad­sides as a form of street lit­er­a­ture or a por­ta­ble medium for cir­cu­lat­ing po­lit­i­cal or so­cial mes­sages. When we last stopped in, he was work­ing on a strik­ing treat­ment of another poem, “Forms of the Earth at Abiquiú,” by Pulitzer Prize-win­ner N. Scott Mo­ma­day. — M.B.

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