Trolling With The Fisher King by Paul Pines


As a fisherman/seaman touched by war zones and wastelands in Viet Nam and the Bowery, a poet/therapist who has worked with his own wounds, and those of others, author Paul Pines believes that the Fisher King’s wounding can be understood as a function that speaks to our post-internet condition on the border of survival and extinction. His troll tracks changes in the expression of this archetype, and the implications and consequences thereof.

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  • Kind: Perfectbound
  • Pages: 171
  • Language: English
  • Date Published: 2017 by Chiron Press
  • ISBN: 978-1-63051-459-4

Trolling with the Fisher King started with the author’s fascination with Amfortas in Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parzival, whose mission was to protect the Holy Grail, the container that unites suffering and love, his inevitable distraction by the outer world and subsequent betrayal of the mission after sustaining a wound in battle that would not heal.  Paul Pines uses the tools Jung employed in his confrontation with the unconscious in The Red Book, gathering symbolic patterns and inter-disciplinary connections to interrogate his personal experience and what he finds in the world within and around him.


“Paul Pines’ Trolling with the Fisher King is a work of genius—not a word I use lightly. He allies his rich personal, variegated history with immense learning, explores the archetypal rhythm of wounding and healing, and provides the reader a deeply moving reminder of the mystery which courses through history and through the lives of each of us. As both a commercial mariner of many voyages, and as a psycho-spiritual “night-sea” voyager, Pines brings us to places of discovery, places of wonder. In a time of distraction and trivia, he recalls the reader to those depths from which we have both come and are wither bound.” – James Hollis, Ph.D., Jungian analyst and author of Hauntings: Dispelling the Ghosts Who Run our Lives and other books.

“Part cultural exploration, part dream analysis, part memoir, part prose poem, Trolling with the Fisher King is a brilliant exposition of symbolic structures that are both out there (culture, the world) and inside (the soul, the mind). A therapist as well as a poet and scholar, Pines has dedicated his gifts to delving the roots of creativity, his own personal journey as an artist, the psyche, and the mysterious images the human race has dreamed in its past, obscure and luminous, the shadows among which we dwell.” –Douglas Glover, editor of Numéro Cinq and author of the award-winning novel, Elle.


Paul PinesPAUL PINES opened The Tin Palace, his Bowery jazz club, in the ’70s. It became the setting for his novel The Tin Angel (Morrow, 1983). A second novel, Redemption, (Editions du Rocher, 1997), explores the Guatemalan Mayan genocide of the ’80s. My Brother’s Madness, (Curbstone Press, 2007) probes the nature of delusion. He has published 13 collections of poetry, most recently Divine Madness (Marsh Hawk, 2012), Fishing On The Pole Star (Dos Madres, 2014) Message From The Memoirist (Dos Madres, 2015) and Charlotte Songs (Marsh Hawk, 2016). He is the editor of Juan Gelman’s selected poems Dark Times/ Filled with Light (Open Letters Press, 2012) and has contributed translations to Small Hours of the Night, Selected Poems of Roque Dalton; and Nicanor Parra, Antipoems: New and Selected. Composer Daniel Asia’s settings of Pines’ poems appear on Songs from the Page of Swords, Breath in a Ram’s Horn and, Purer Than Purest Pure (BBC Singers) on the Summit label. Asia’s 5th Symphony, recorded by the Pilsen SO, features poems by Pines and Israeli poet Yehuda Amichai. The Tin Angel Opera, was performed by the Center for Contemporary Opera in NYC. Pines has conducted workshops for the National Writers Voice and lectured for the National Endowment for the Humanities. He has been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony, Ossabaw Foundation, and Virginia Center, as well as a recipient of an Artists’ Fellowship, N.Y.S. Foundation for the Arts. He lives in Glens Falls, New York, where he is a psychotherapist in private practice and hosts the Lake George Jazz Weekend.

Additional information

Weight 13 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × .5 in