Finders Keepers: Geek Week


This post is part of a weekly column highlighting found poetry related news and resources. If you know of found poetry related news, resources or events that should be featured here, please email News & Resources Editor Martin Elwell.

SPMemeOn the heels of spending the weekend watching a Star Wars movie marathon with my wife’s family, I came across this Simon Pegg meme on Facebook. Having won a few games of Star Wars Trivial Pursuit in my day, I was pleased that no one was taken aback by the level of detailed knowledge about the films that is stored in my brain. When I noticed that most of my found poetry News & Resource findings for this week were science/space related, I got even more excited.


Science Fiction

StarWarsDid you know that the scripts for several of the Star Wars films are available online at (That’s “Internet Movie Script Database” in case you didn’t already know.) If not, consider yourself informed. If you’re a Star Wars geek like me, you may enjoy perusing the scripts, reading the comments, comparing the scripts to the films and perhaps creating some found poetry from George Lucas’ (in)famous dialogue. I enjoyed scrolling through the script for A New Hope all afternoon. But alas, if you are not into Star Wars, and this is totally boring to you, “These are not the droids you’re looking for. You can go about your business. Move along.”

Science Non-Fiction

Apollo11Thanks to a tweet from plugged-in poet-scientist Christian Bök, I came across this found poetry moon rock. It’s the 200-plus page Onboard Voice Transcription from the Apollo 11 mission. Apollo 11 was the 1969 mission that resulted in the first human expedition to the moon (that we know of anyway…). If remixing Han Solo and Luke Skywalker doesn’t suit your fancy, perhaps remixing Neal Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin will.

The Self on Display

LFIf outer-space isn’t your bag, maybe moving inward is a better option. Artist Laurie Frick makes art out of data about herself. Her idea was born out of a movement referred to as The Quantified Self, which has become increasingly popular as smart phones get smarter and other devices like Nike Plus and Fit Bit become more accessible. The movement is basically the explosion of the practice of measuring data about oneself, like heart rate, steps taken per day, miles run, number of times woken during the night, etc. Frick described her work for Rooms Magazine last year as “a visual language for conveying human patter,” and it just might be the twenty-first-century’s Confessionalism. We all know someone (or more accurately some-glomerate) is out there tracking data about us, but it may be more important to look at what we’re tracking about ourselves and what we can learn or create from it.

Under the Words

PtakAfter looking inside ourselves, outside our atmosphere and into a galaxy far far away, where else is there to go for found poetry? How about under the words on the page? I mentioned found poetry as archeology in the past, and this post on Ptak Science Books revisits the concept. What if the bad or boring writing we come across is really a cover-up for something else? Perhaps something more meaningful or completely different. Found Poetry of Accumulations talks about removing the “wordly insulations” covering a piece of writing to find the truly meaningful content beneath. Start digging!

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