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
#2 Stillness and Shenanigans
#3 The Countless Hours
the thought of
lose faith in
the flesh and blood
beneath the skin
If you would like to purchase the original piece above, it is yours for $10 (inc. postage and handling to anywhere in the world). Drop me a note in the comments and I’ll be in contact. It will be mounted and signed.
UPDATE: The piece is now SOLD.
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She ties the dressing gown around her waist. Lines up her toes where the metal coping separates the hallway carpet from the bathroom tiles. A diver’s stance. Anticipation of the tiles’ coldness.
She steps. Plummets. Side steps the bath mat. Plants her feet squarely. Small ripples quickly subside. The cold tiles prickle the soles of her feet until it stings. Tapers off to an equilibrium.
Repeatedly she will lie on her back on the bathroom floor undressed. Lets the cold of the tiles fight with the heat of her body. She relents. Acquiesces. Adds a layer of permafrost to her heart against the fire of her mother’s tongue.
Posted in Creativity, Short Stories
Tagged creativity, experimental, fiction, fiction friday, flash fiction, Friday flash, handwritten pages, micro-fiction, microfiction, writers, writing
It is the rhythmic rasp of the sandpaper she likes best. A counterpoint, and companion, voice to her grandfather’s asthmatic wheeze as he makes furniture and occasionally toys. Punctuated by the cough of the match head on the striking paper to light his hand rolled cigarettes.
She can discern by ear the coarseness of the grit against the grain. Jarrah, pine, mahogany. He gives her the cork block and a sheet of sandpaper. Converses with her through each stroke.
She knows, one day, this conversation will cease.
Every so often
walk with bare
in the trees
And a bonus black out poem
the other side
And a bonus blackout poem for your enjoyment
Posted in Ars Poetica, Creativity
Tagged blackout poetry, creativity, erasure, experimental, fiction, micro-fiction, microfiction, micropoetry, zentangle, zentangle poem
Once upon a time
gave up this nonsense
changed places without