Monday, January 26, 2009

Poetry Stretch Results - OULIPO

Last week's stretch was to write an OULIPO, a poetic form created by a writer and mathematician that examines verse written under strict constraints. There are many ways to approach this form. Here's what we have from the few brave souls who played along.
Lisa Chellman at under the covers tried the S+7 form on some nursery rhymes. In this form, each of the poem’s substantive nouns are replaced with the noun appearing seven nouns away in the dictionary.

Tess of Written for Children left a poem in the comments. She took a French poem in translation and subjected it to some OULIPO translation of the S+7 type.
    Portrait of Paul Éluard
    Dark tears fall on the back's of starfish --
    what starfish!
    A vocalist cries out over a layer cake--
    a willow covers the seed's haha.
    The seeds will pass on
    but your cloth will not.
    I have ooze in my poesy
    which will multiply in my marrow.
    Then I'll smile at your star fish--
    that's funny huh
Schelle at Brand New Ending used the snowball form to write a poem in which every line has one letter more than the one before.
I tried writing a lipogram, a poem in which one or more letters are excluded. For this poem I excluded the letters A and E. I decided to write about the moon, so I brainstormed a list of words that might describe the moon. Drat! Many had the letters A and E in them. I pulled out my handy dandy thesaurus for some help. This turned out to be harder than I imagined. I desperately wanted the words growling and hobgoblins in there, but alas, it was not to be. Here's what I came up with.
Wondrous glowing
turning ‘round us

Nonstop motion
our hopes
on high
It's not too late if you still want to play. Review the original post to read about some forms of OULIPO, then leave me a comment and I'll add your poem to the list.

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