Your cart is empty.

*Orders may take up to five business days before shipping, and mail carriers are experiencing delays. Your package may take longer than usual to arrive. Thank you for your patience and support :)

Product Image N.H. Pritchard: The Matrix

N.H. Pritchard: The Matrix

The Matrix by Norman H. Pritchard (1939–1996) gathers a selection of the Concrete and Black Arts poet’s work from 1960 to 1970. The seventy-one poems collected here might be regarded, as Charles Bernstein has written, as “sound” poems, being tethered not only to the literature of the Black Arts Movement but also to jazz culture and urban life in New York. Drawing as much from the visual arts and concrete poetry as from sound-based experimentation and music, Pritchard utilized the simple tools of spacing and typography to create syncopations, vibrations, and musical rhythms. What emerges is nothing less than a self-contained system of mimetic codes that challenge modernist modes of perception and representation. Formally innovative and anticipating what Michael Riffaterre would come to call the semiotics of “ungrammaticalities,” the book is a syntactical and visual experience in repetition, stutters, and structure. 

Born and based in New York City, Pritchard was trained in visual arts and art history at New York University and Columbia University. As a member of the Umbra group (1962–65)—a collective of young Black writers that included Steve Cannon, Thomas C. Dent, David Henderson, Calvin Hernton, and Lorenzo Thomas—he met with fellow members in Manhattan’s Lower East Side to read and discuss writing and politics. They channeled their sense of urgency in developing and promoting Black culture into the literary magazine Umbra. Following the group’s dissolution, Pritchard continued to be involved in New York’s art, music, and film worlds in the late 1960s. The Matrix was published by Doubleday in 1970, marking one of only a handful of books on concrete poetry to be published by a major American publishing house. His second and final book Eecchhooeess was released by New York University Press in 1971.  

If Pritchard’s work testifies to the Black poetics of “broken witnessing,” it is also deeply philosophical and spiritual. “I feel that there’s only one reality, and that reality is God,” says Pritchard in an unpublished video from 1981. “Everything else is actual—or what I call ‘transreal.’ In other words, everything is transreal except God. Trans meaning through, across, within, into within.” In a 1969 letter to fellow Umbra member Ishmael Reed, Pritchard writes: “Transreal is a word which visited me in the fall of 1967 while making initial probes into a book which I call Origins: A Contribution to the Monophysiticy of Form. My ‘definition’ is: Transrealism = O.” 

While leaving it open to interpretation, “transrealism” was a vector through which Pritchard organized a host of collaborations—in March 1972, for instance, the poet hosted an event in New York called “The End of Intelligent Writing: A Transreal Awakening,” which featured artists such as Vito Acconci, W. Bliem Kern, and Richard Kostelanetz. Describing Pritchard’s work in terms of “ironic materiality,” Reed has remarked: “At the limit, Pritchard’s self-undermining poems ask us whether poetry needs words at all.” Indeed, his is a poetics of both anti-transcendence and revelation.

Norman Henry Pritchard was born in New York City in 1939 and studied at New York University and Columbia University. His work has been published in two collections: The Matrix Poems: 1960–1970 (1970) and Eecchhooeess (1971). His poetry was featured in the journals Umbra and The East Village Other, performed on the jazz poetry compilation New Jazz Poets (1967), and anthologized in The New Black Poetry (1969) and In a Time of Revolution: Poems from Our Third World (1969). Pritchard taught poetry at the New School for Social Research and was a poet-in-residence at Friends Seminary. He died in eastern Pennsylvania on February 8, 1996.

Softcover, 224 pages, 5.4 x 8.2 inches, USA, March 2021

*COVID-19 Notice: Order processing is slower than usual at this time due to safety and logistical issues surrounding the pandemic. In addition, mail carriers have informed us that shipping times are not guaranteed, and in some cases have been significantly delayed. Unfortunately these delays are out of our control. Thank you in advance for your patience. 

We really appreciate you shopping with us.  Below are our general policies.  We do our best to make our customers happy, so if you have a concern please feel free to contact us :)


  • All shipping time frames are not guaranteed—after we hand your package to the mail service or shipping company, we are unable to control unforeseen delays on their end.
  • We ship orders out Mon-Fri, often same day if possible—but please allow 1-8 business days for processing. Most packages are sent via US Postal Service with delivery confirmation.
    • TELFAR BAGS may take even longer than the above time frame during this time, up to 2 weeks to process and send out from our office due to high order volumes.  Priority shipments will be processed first, but ALL orders are shipping slower than usual.
  • Please make sure your shipping address and contact info are correctly entered at checkout. Unless you specify to us that you want to pay to fully insure your package, we are not liable for loss or damage. Shipping charges are non-refundable.
  • US (Domestic) shipping is calculated by order total. Standard shipping usually takes 2-9 business days, depending on destination. Priority and Express options are available at checkout for additional fees.
 $0.00-$24.99 $4.95 
$25.00-$49.99 $6.50
$50.00-$99.99 $7.50
$100.00-$149.99 $10.00
$150 and up $12.00



  • TELFAR bag orders have separate shipping fees which are automatically calculated at checkout.  

International Customers

  • Customs fees may apply depending on tariff rules in your country. Your country's customs office may in rare cases delay the arrival of your package beyond our control. The customer is responsible for any fees or taxes added by their country's customs office.
  • International shipments are sent via US Postal Service and rates are calculated by total order weight in order to best approximate actual charges. 
    • First Class International (transit time varies ~7-21 days or longer), limited tracking and no insurance
    • Priority International (6-10 business days from shipping date), tracking and limited insurance
    • Express International (3-5 days business days from shipping date), tracking and full insurance
    • Please keep in mind we are not liable for loss or damage in the mail if you select an option without insurance and tracking.  We recommend insuring and tracking whenever possible.
    • If you don't see your country on the shipping options list or have any other special requests on how you'd like us to handle your shipment, just contact us before or at the time of placing your order and we'll do our best to help.   :)
    • The US Postal Service will not accept the package if the address is written in a foreign alphabet, so please be sure to check your shipping address as we are unable to verify addresses before we ship and your package may get lost otherwise.


    Because of the tiny nature of our operation, we apologize for our limited return policy.

    • No returns on books, music, artwork and objects, accessories, and general merchandise, aside from defective items. Unworn clothing and shoes bought online may be exchanged or returned within 7 days of receipt, unless otherwise specified.
    • Returns are only accepted if you notify us within 7 days of receipt of the item and return it to us within 14 days of the order ship date. Goods must be in perfect unworn/unused condition with all original packaging intact. The customer is responsible for outbound and return shipping costs, which are non-refundable. If store credit is issued, it is valid for one year from the issue date.
    • We also cannot accept returns on sale items. Some sale items are the last copy and may have experienced some wear and tear. Discounts take into account for any damage but if you have any questions about the condition of a particular item, please email us.
    • If you have any issues receiving your order, including lost packages, you must contact us within 90 days of the shipment date or we may be unable to help.

    Thank you in advance for understanding!

    Privacy Policy

    • All customer information collected by us through our online shop will only be used for the purposes of fulfilling and delivering your orders, and customer service. If you choose to sign up for our mailing list, we will only use that information to send you occasional announcements related to Ooga Booga.  
    • We will never share or sell your information to any third parties or use it for any outside marketing purposes.  
    • Should you ever wish to unsubscribe or opt out of our mailing list, simply fill out the form on our website to unsubscribe, or send us an email to be removed.  

    Please feel free to ask us any questions about a product or the ordering process!