Finding Meaning Between The Black Lines

Blackout poetry, or erasure poetry, is unique in that you are working with a predetermined set of words. You can blackout or erase as much or as little as you like. Form new words and phrases from what exists.

But what does it mean? A recent conversation with creative collaborators posed this question and one suggestion was that blackout poetry was a search for meaning. Firstly as individual; secondly for the audience. 

I compose firstly for myself, then for an audience. However the text also exists independent of me as creator. 

With that in mind, I took the initial post that sparked this discussion and made three erasure poems. Each time I looked for something different; another angle, a change of perspective. 

For these I copied the text into a document and used the highlighter tool. Hence some fragment spaces.

There were a couple of words or phrases I returned to, a focal point or locus for writing but I had to deliberately move away from them to forge something new.

Was I looking for something of myself in the poetry? I am not sure. Sometimes there is an identification with the text. At other times it is an enjoyment of the construction of language. While perhaps it is also a disquieting of the soul and heart when darker ideas and phrases emerge.

I don’t think there is a clear answer to the question. If anything, the new text raises more questions. Questions that may have an answer or questions that may provoke a dialogue.

I’ll leave the answers up to you.

#1 Traces of Light

screen-shot-2016-12-18-at-10-09-30-pm

#2 Stillness and Shenanigans 

screen-shot-2016-12-18-at-10-19-16-pm

#3 The Countless Hours

screen-shot-2016-12-18-at-10-42-14-pm

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