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Weekend Assignment: Blackout Poetry

Poetry

Photo by Kimli (cc) via flickr

One of the benefits to writing for an education market is I get to spend a bunch of time researching cool things to teach kids to do. In the process, I routinely run across fun things for writers of all ages. One of my recent discoveries along those lines? Blackout Poetry. I found it when I stumbled upon the companion site for Austin Kleon’s book, Newspaper BlackoutI immediately felt like I had uncovered a society of secret poetry, hidden carefully in plain sight, among everyday words. Blackout Poetry is sinfully simple to explain: take a newspaper article and black out some of the words so that you leave a poem behind. You can see some brilliant examples on the site linked above.

The thing I like best about the method is that it forces you to consider each word, weigh it for it’s worth, and select only the choicest morsels to savor in the finished piece. I find the whole concept fascinating.

This weekend, take the time to experiment with this method of “finding” poetry. Or, if poetry is not your style, use the method to find flash fiction instead.

Take your time and read between the lines. What will you find lurking there?

Happy writing!

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One comment on “Weekend Assignment: Blackout Poetry

  1. […] In a nutshell, found poetry is made by lifting words and phrases from a published work and arranging them into a poem. (True diehards will insist that the order of the words and phrases remain unchanged, particularly in “blackout” poems. Longtime followers may remember this Weekend Assignment on Blackout Poetry.) […]

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