Category Archives: pomosco

PoMoSco Day 30

Here we are, at last. The final day. I have loved having part of this month be posting poems I thought you’d enjoy. The final prompt asked us to: Visit your local restaurant, bar or coffee shop and snag a copy of the menu. Write a poem using only words and phrases found on the menu.

This, as with any source, depends on text to be workable. I was lucky. I chose a Japanese menu. The restaurant must make a hundred rolls and they name every single one of them. In fact, I had too many words. The first things I did was delete words I knew I wasn’t going to use, so the list was not so intimidating. I like what I finally arrived at: Life is a Japanese Menu.

Other items on the menu (I went nuts today, because it’s the final one):

Barbara C: Please ask

Richard Walker: aromas!

Massimo Soranzio: Buried within

Misky: Filling and Earl Grey at Pret

Kimmy Stühle: Angels on the Moon

Gary Glauber: The Western Chinese Amigo’s Umbrella

Zann Carter:Live–Often and Well

Andrea Janelle Dickens: Émigré Memories

Lori Brack: gypsy midnight

Okay, I’m stopping. The relatives are on their way from the airport, so I guess I should cast my eye over the flat. The dusting… ah, well. Enjoy these. I hope to, a couple of times next month, post links to some more that I come across as I go back through and read without a deadline.

I will see you Tuesday for my regular prompt; Thursday for links and such; and Friday for the prompt roundup.


Posted by on 30/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 29

I’m still alive and kicking. Okay, maybe not kicking. Today’s prompt was… interesting: Choose a source text where key terms reappear frequently throughout. Books on a particular subject (e.g., whaling, basketball, the Civil War) lend themselves easily to this prompt, as do textbooks, medical journals, etc. Fiction is harder, but you may challenge yourself!

Choose 1-5 of these recurring terms. In a source text about chess, you might choose the words “pawn” and “board.” For each word you’ve chosen, select a replacement word. In the example above, you might choose to replace “pawn” with “woman” and “board” with “home.” Substitute the replacement word(s) on your list each time the original term(s) appear(s) in the text. Create a poem, keeping editing and authorial intervention to a minimum. Got that? Here’s mine: Bookcombing Tips For Southern Florida

Other substitutions (and be sure you look to see what the source text is):

Misky: What Do Kisses Drink

james w. moore: poets of the Wolf — this one is giving me much pleasure. I left a tab open the third time I hunted it down to reread. The two items giving me much joy are picturing specific writers from the PoMoSco group as the wolves, howling, of course. Or, peopling the landscape with famous poets.

Massimo Soranzio: After

Richard Walker: the pursuit of happiness

Rebecca Siegel: On Swarming

Barbara C: Freeing the Muse

Gary Glauber: Replacing and Installing Your WF yes, it is long, but what a giggle

Nancy Chen Long: Glitter Roses Are Beautiful Moons Too

Enjoy these. I will see you tomorrow for the final poem.


Posted by on 29/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 28

Whoo! That’s all. Too much energy required for anything else. Two more days. Two days. It’s good we have family coming in, so the aftershock of post-April won’t hit me until next week and I’ll have been eased into a different routine.

Instructions: Start with an X ACTO knife, box cutter or other cutting device. Find a text you don’t mind cutting up — or make a photocopy of the text if necessary — and physically cut out the unused portions to create an erasure poem.
Watch james w. moore’s video, “Making Heaven,” which captures his process of creating poems using one approach.
Scan your completed work — or take a picture of it — and upload it to the site.

Today’s gave me trouble and I ended up compromising, not on the poem, but on what a cut-out entails. While understanding that if it’s cut, it’s a cut-out, I knew that was rationalising. I spent an entire April watching james doing cut-outs, during the Pulitzer challenge two years ago. I knew what I wanted. Alas. If I Wish

Other cut-ups and cut-outs:

james w. moore: Crunch & his passenger

Daniel Ari: ?QUIZ?

Barbara C: Undeceived

Richard Walker: Aunt and Uncle

Rebecca Siegel: Journal of Emily Shore

Misky: White as Milk

Vinita Agrawal: Waiting

Gary Glauber: Sound Fury

There are some dark-ish ones in here and I can assure you, if you have never done any kind of erasure, that the darkness will have surprised many of the poets, when it first appeared and they realised where the poem was going. Again, you see many approaches. Why, you might ask, so many different types of ways to do what remains an erasure? Because (I have learned after a reading about a hundred) there really is a different effect.

Enjoy these and I shall see you tomorrow for the penultimate poem.

Lori Brack: Icarus, from a distance

A.K. Afferez: testimony

I know, but I just read them and hadn’t hit publish, yet.


Posted by on 28/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 27

Three more days. Hard to believe. But, I will have many poems in my revision bag that I am happy about reworking. Today’s prompt is an erasure by chance: Start with two dice and your source text. You’ll want to work with a smaller section of text for this one. For each line, roll the dice. Erase or remove the word in that line that corresponds with the number that comes up (i.e., if you roll an eight, erase the eighth word in that line). Continue to work through the text, re-rolling the dice for each line, until you’ve reached the end of your source text solution.

Repeat, removing additional words, until you arrive at your poem. Experiment with space, illustration or other visual presentation to engage with the relative silence created.

I chose another Adrienne Rich poem to work with and came up with: Child’s Poet Dreaming.

More Spaced Out Poems:

Misky: Shades Beneath White

Barbara C: Appalachian Dream

Richard Walker: judgmental in trusting

Rebecca Siegel: Map

Pamela Sayers: A Tease Around the Eyes

Gary Glauber: Thinking

Doug Luman: Audubon Field Report: Aphelocoma Coerulescens

I’ve known this throughout, but reading today’s poems brought home how differently we each approach writing a poem, how differently we interpret a prompt. Fascinating. Enjoy these. Tomorrow is another angst-filled prompt, for me, but should provide many interesting approaches.


Posted by on 27/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 26

Happy Sunday. I have dim sum in my near future, always a happy prospect. The prompt for today is an interesting one and was invented by Charmi Anderson, a writer who participated in The Pulitzer Remix Challenge, two years ago. As Charmi described her process, she had taken an envelope with a glassine window in it and everything that appeared within that was her material.

Instructions: Take your source text and a ruler. Mark off a column of  text one inch wide down one or more pages — an inch down the centre of your page, or along the page’s left or right margin. Craft your poem using only words located within your vertical column inch(es). If you use multiple pages, locate your column inch in the same location on each page.

My inch gave me a fair amount of material but it wasn’t until I reminded myself I only needed to use what I wanted, that the poem appeared: I Have Long Scribbled

Other inches:

Sonja Johanson: Alligator

Misky: The Voyage of an Enslaved Heart

Barbara C: created

Sarah Sloat: Asleep by the Sea Window

Richard Walker: you have the ability to stay

Gary Glauber: Hexagram

Theo LeGro: Departing

Nancy Chen Long: Assimilation of the Knower

Okay, I’ll stop. I get caught up and then I want you to read them. Enjoy. Tomorrow is another erasure, but one left to chance. See you then.


Posted by on 26/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 25

The end is in sight. I have drafts of the remaining poems to work on and hope to start next week pretty much done. For this prompt: Pick a public place with a lot of foot traffic. Select a concrete noun (tree, wax, mouse, window). Hold or display a sign inviting people to contribute their definitions, or talk about what they think about when they hear that word; or, walk around and ask random people. Collect a minimum of ten definitions, and use those words to write your poem. Do not include the chosen noun anywhere in the poem’s body or title: So Dry Even Insects Don’t Live There

Other crowd sourcing:

Misky: A Dog’s Tale

Richard Walker: some people

Gary Glauber: Bling Thing

Barbara C: Quenched

Kelly Nelson: Before I’ve Had My Coffee

A.K. Afferez: i just can’t seem to think of it as a star

Roxanna Bennett: Old Grow

Yes, we do have new names. I challenged Fate. This is what happens. Enjoy. I will see you tomorrow for an interesting method of gathering found material.


Posted by on 25/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 24

We’re coming down to the wire; less than a week to go. This prompt gave me angst for a while because I didn’t know what, exactly, we were supposed to do. Then, someone did their poem early. I had a blast. Instructions: Approach a text with a plan to remove something. Think beyond just a single word and instead consider removing references to a subject or emotion, actions taken by certain characters, colours… Apply your approach and, keeping as much of the remaining text intact as possible, create your poem from results.

I couldn’t figure things out from that, but the poem I saw removed parts of speech. Ohhhhh! I can do that: If Lonely. Be sure and read the process notes to see the variety of methods writers employed.

Other best laid plans:

Misky: Lost Torches

Barbara C: Imagine

Laurie Kolp: looks like birth

Rebecca Siegel: Cyclone

Massimo Soranzio: I

Richard Walker: look

Enjoy. From now on, you’ll probably not see a new name, as I know whom I will go to, by now. I’ll still check, when a title is hard to resist. Tomorrow’s prompt is another where our poems rely on the words of people we talked with, or listened to.


Posted by on 24/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 23

Today’s is an interesting exercise. Jenni & Co. wanted to be sure we are familiar with online erasing tools (I hear the groans, those who know me and tech). I did it the hard way because the directions were the simplest. Instructions:

Open your source text in Photoshop — when you do so, it automatically opens the image in its own layer. Add a new layer on top of your source text. Select the brush tool and choose a colour swatch of your choice. You can use the eyedropper tool to select the colour of your page background (for a true erasure look), or select another colour of your choice. Paint over your source text, obscuring lines until only the words of your erasure poem remain.

For a video tutorial, watch Jenni B. Baker’s 8-minute demonstration of how she creates erasure poems for her Erasing Infinite project (well worth a watch if you want to try erasure poetry).

Save your completed work as an image file (JPG or PNG preferred) and upload it to the site.

After I received a translation of what I was to do, I ended up with: Once Then Nothing.

Other erasures:

james w. moore: never burn out

Barbara C: without surrender

Annie Razz: Poet Tree

Richard Walker: Grade 5

Misky: Two Cocks

Rebecca Siegel: Last Expedition

Vinita Agrawal: Centuries

Marsha Schuh: Chiarascuro

What? I know, but they’re short. Okay, Richard’s is not short (or long), but it is fun. Just a couple more.

Jamison Crabtree: ashes on cream

Angela K. Brown: Articulate Word

There is a wide assortment of the type of thing that can be done. Enjoy. See you tomorrow for a prompt I dreaded that turns out to be one of my favourite ways to play.


Posted by on 23/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 22

Hello. I am missing our usual routine on Wordgathering and missing the chat with the usual people. May is coming with a return to the regular schedule!

Instructions: Choose a phone number — can be made up. Write out the full number (including any area codes) as a series of digits without dashes or parentheses. Decide what your numbers will correspond to — words, sentences or pages. If your first number is two (2), you could grab the second word on a page, the second sentence on a page, or the second page in the book. Do this for each digit. You can cycle through the phone number series multiple times to generate enough text for your poem.

Mine: Living on a Dragon.

Other dialed in poems:

Misky: It Melted to Wax

Barbara C: Before the Battle

Richard Walker: setting

Doug Luman: Audubon Field Report: Chordeiles Minor

Lori Brack: parable

Short and sweet. Enjoy and I’ll see you tomorrow for a prompt I found difficult to carry out, but love the result.


Posted by on 22/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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PoMoSco Day 21

Snarl… not really, but I will be glad to get some of my days back. Today’s instructions: Select a source text . Copy down all of the questions it contains. Create a poem made up of a series of questions from your list. Working with a digital text? Press CTRL+F on a PC or COMMAND+F on a Mac, then search for the “?” character (no quotes). Alternately, use FPR Book Reviews Editor Doug Luman’s “Questions” tool. Select “Questions” from the drop-down list, paste your source text into the box, then press the “Run” button.

Can you imagine creating a poem that works, but only uses questions? My questions come from a book of questions and I enjoyed drawing out the ones I wanted to use: What Tree is Cut During Moonlight?

Other questions:

james moore: hadn’t you rather

Rebecca Siegel: What I Really Want to Know is This

Zann Carter: What Have You Done With It?

Nancy Chen Long: Let Me Ask You This

J.Lynn Sheridan: Two Novices in a Boat

Misky: Are Those Shadows Me?

Barbara C:

Richard Walker: Won’t You Be Scared?

Doug Luman: Burrowmaking

Alright, alright, I’ll stop, but there are so many I like, such cleverness and beauty. Enjoy and I will see you tomorrow.

One more from someone who occasionally shadows us: de’s Won’t you have a sip of ocean?


Posted by on 21/04/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry, pomosco


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