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.
On Sunday, April 13th at the Milhopper Branch Library in Gainesville, FL, Found Poetry Review contributor and Pulitzer Remix participant, Mary Bast, will share examples of how to find poetry in anything from a soup label to a political manifesto in her presentation called “Found Poetry: A Literary Rorschach.” If you can’t be in Gainesville for the reading, you can read several of Bast’s poems here.
Don’t confuse Oulipo with Justin Bieber. Believe me, Oulipo is far more badass – not to mention classy, intelligent, artistic…I digress. Here at the Found Poetry Review, we are just warming up for April’s National Poetry Month project, Oulipost. Maybe I’ve mentioned it once or twice. If you want to see a list of the participants from around the globe, complete with links to their blogs and Oulipost participant self-interviews, it’s available on the Ouliposters Page . Lastly, for an objective perspective on the challenging Oulipo constraints, check out Christopher Beha’s post at Believer Magazine titled, “Oulipo Ends Where the Work Begins.”
If you’re working with constraints or making found poetry from a very large source text, you might find the Text Content Analysis Tool at UsingEnglish.com useful. The tool creates a word frequency cloud from your text; provides word, sentence and paragraph counts; provides distributions by word length; and rates your text on level of difficulty. I used the tool to help with the Oulipo constraint, Tautogram, which requires the poet to compose a poem with words that all begin with the same letter. The word frequency cloud was particularly helpful. Upload some text and try it for yourself!
According to Cecilia Corrigan of Jacket 2, the definition of Conceptual writing got even fuzzier with the publication of I’ll Drown My Book: Conceptual Writing By Women edited by Caroline Bergvall, Laynie Browne, Teresa Carmody and Vanessa Place. “This book aligns itself in title with a movement that privileges an idea over content, yet the volume itself is much more concerned with content than the representative idea. As a result, the mystifying effect of the individual works is subsumed by the mystifying question of how to read the book, and where to find the commonalities or to understand the categories.” Read the rest of Corrigan‘s review here.