Blackout poem #19—Splinter Hyperbole

Tawny cedar–what pain!

Wanderer after many years

nourishing in thy deep-sunken pain–

will it never heal?

Can this cool tree, and Thames, and dew

afford no balm?


The moonlight and this unfriendly wild.

Again with the seared eyes.

Poor fugitive, and once more seem to make agony


thick eternal pain.



Words selected by a poem of Matthew Arnold from the Anthology of Popular Verse edited by Christopher Hurford, page 81.






Blackout poem #18

That when hope-hours that close

shallow love. O, that amorous power

of hate and hopeless doom

thou hast no reason why.

Love call thee both.



It hadn’t occurred to me that I had been–for seventeen days–using only prose, with the exception of that one of the yoga pamphlet.

Words selected by a poem of John Milton from The Anthology of Popular Verse edited by Christopher Hurford, page 80.




Blackout poem #17

Idea and image are tides,

each receding into five lines, they

leave small treasures. Shells maybe.

Don’t leave them! Animals will eat them and choke.

What? Ignore that last bit.

But maybe? Think about it.

Willie Nelson loves coloured glass.

Smooth shells on the shore,

footsteps in tandem, and suddenly:

older, countless others.


Words selected from Writing The Natural Way by Gabriele Rico, page 108. For those of you who are following these posts, I guess you know by now that I have used this book quite a few times. #1, I am reading it, and #2, it’s a really good read!

This one turned out funny/absurd as the last one did. I guess I feel a little funny these days.

P.S. Willie Nelson is not in the book but I still like him. It was another Nelson altogether, but I don’t know which one. Her, actually, I just checked. One Robin Nelson.

Blackout poem #16—Yoga Class Pamphlet

Your form taxes your health.

You will be weighed

in energy and food, mostly vegetables.

Really–personality finds its voice–

thanks to dance, choices, and breathing.

Thanks to Kimonos and booklets.

Thanks to grace and glow.

Deliver meditation in twenty minutes.

Master yourself and the Himalayas in three easy steps.

Yoga, yoga, art and yoga.

Two dollars for towel rental, taxes not included.



I went to a Yoga studio the other day and got this printout with info on the classes. I found it funny and loaded. I’ve taken some of the words out of context, and I’ve (somewhat improperly but purposefully so) translated from French. They did not have English pamphlets but that is a good thing. I don’t know if it would have been as funny if it hadn’t been loosely translated.

I realize that this is less of a blackout poem and more of a cut-up poem, but it sort of just happened, and I went with it.


Blackout poem #14

Slipped the day in bourbon

the tang of old people who died

with not so much as a ritual.

Pink slender-strange faces

but a pretty fedora does’t always

put me in that mood of strange knowing.

Things might not be great.

There she came, she dipped to make sense,

the eyes tilted at the night,

the realm of being things.


Words selected from page 15 of the novel Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. I had been reading this not too long ago, and got to page 110, but I put it down for some reason. It’s the type of book that I get annoyed when I got to my metro stop, and I think that might be why I stopped reading it. I just wanted to read it all in one sitting! That kind of addictive book where you don’t want to do anything else. The writing is soo good, and smart-sophisticated. I really like it. Look for my review of it in a little while! In the meantime, I encourage everyone to read it. I bought it because I heard they were making a movie of it, and I was intrigued, but insist on reading the book first, yes, I am that type of person. I am not one of those people who hate on movies made from books though, because a book is a rectangular and leafy object with words in that have incredible power to make the mind dream. With film it is an auditory and visual thing, which can be a voyage of their own! (I am thinking LOTR here!) It is only in really rare and wonderful circumstances that one be as good as the other. I usually like to think of them as separate entities. People work hard to make books. People work hard to make movies. That’s just how it is.


Blackout poem #13

As if it was a great, wet hand,

it caught her hand and eye, and she froze in place,

and blindly swept toward the floor.

It’s listening

and the thing seemed to slither

through the dust through the dim cellar.


Words selected form a particularly dramatic scene from Neil Gaiman’s Coraline, pages 112 and 113. I took the word from as close to the centre as possible.


I loved the movie. I remember the night I watched it for the first time–the adverts, I felt, were ambiguous and in no way gave it justice. I lay in bed, in the dark, completely haunted and delighted, unable to sleep. Why does delighted and haunted happen to me? They just go hand in hand for some reason.