Yon Milhaus

From Plastic Tub

Born August 8, 1932 in Nuremberg, Germany. Died 1997. He arrives only reluctantly, preferring -- ultimately -- to stay home and make "incidental charms". He is a blindworm, laying eggs in shallow pools of water. He receives several automating whirl-a-gigs.

Another youthful immigrant to the United States, he returned to his native Germany in 1960. Writing within the theoretical space of classical psychoanalysis, Milhaus approached Associationalist activity as a rigorous expression of the ego's mastery of the libido; conversely, Accidentalism was seen as a similar triumph of the id. Building on this dialectic, he produced an astounding volume of sober and orderly treatises on the more arcane branches of AA lore. His Life Alphabetically (1967) is still considered to be one of the masterpieces of Associationalist poetry and his painting are acknowledged to be "striking." His only eccentricity was that he preferred to work in his study with his penis hanging out of his pants, even in the presence of guests and visitors. No one ever questioned him about it, and the practice is said to have inspired Adid's first glasspants.

He died doing what he loved best, painting in his studio. Following his request, a viewing was held in which everyone invited was required to attend totally naked except for a black ribbon they were asked to wear in any fashion they wished; although most tied it around a wrist or knot of hair, one enterprising invitée left it a-dangle from where it was wedged into his anus, so that he appeared to have a small velvet tail.

Known Works

Life Alphabetically, 1967, poetry broadside.


Milhaus' penchant for scrappy girlfriends produced "map-like scarification across his back, which could be read like tea-leaves."