Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature

Monday, April 27, 2009

List-Poem on the Loose



Here's a list-poem I've been messing around with for the longest time. Actually, the time hasn't been the longest, not even close.

List-poems often work out well on the their own terms, as good poems, but they can also serve as good warm-up exercises or as ways to generate ideas.

In this one, I think I wanted a poem that could be read top-to-bottom (on the left margin) as well as left-to-right (the usual way), but, as usual, this goal ends up being too clever by half or not clever enough or something. Anyway, the point is . . . hang loose, list loosely, and have some fun with a list-poem of your own.

Each

each word a stone each
stone a weight
each weight a wish each
want a wait
each wait a time each
time loss
each loss a lake each
lake a cloak
each cloak a shade each
shade a wish
each wish a lie each
lie a word
each word a yes each word a
no each word a breath
each breath an each

Copyright 2009 Hans Ostrom

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