It’s been raining every day now for about 10 days. The weather is becoming a serial psycho-killer. So I’m sitting here at the dining room table with the window curtains pulled back trying to squeeze in as much light as possible. Drawing with artificial light is just not the same as drawing with sunlight. I’m easily distracted and my mind jumps around looking for a place to land like a bee buzzes around looking for the right flower to suck. That’s how I got to Found Poetry.
There’s two basic ways of writing “found poetry”. The first is by copying phrases from books and mashing them up together to create a poem. You can further manipulate the existing text by deleting words and/or changing the punctuation. An excellent example of this type of found poetry is Annie Dillard’s “Mornings Like This: Found Poems”. Dillard has carefully recopied chosen sentence fragments from old and often forgotten books to create poems that are sometimes happy, sometimes sad. Below are a couple of excerpts from Dillard’s poems:
“Give me time enough in this place/And I will surely make a beautiful thing.” (from “Mornings Like This”)
“Think over what you have accomplished. Was it all that you wished? Has this story been told before?” (from “Junior High School English”)
(Annie Dillard’s “Mornings Like This” can be found on Archive HERE.)
But I’m a scissors & paste kind of woman and like the idea of de-obsoleting unwanted books (computer manuals, kids’ textbooks, boring unread novels) by cutting them up and, collage style, writing “found poems.” You know, anonymous letter style. But that would mean cluttering up even more my dining room table. So I’ve come up with an alternative—to take snippets of Dillard’s poems online and then evidence the words I want to keep and obliterate the others. Then they would be Found Poems Found within Found Poems.