Earlier this month I shared some of my initial takeways from the Found Poetry Review’s monthlong challenge affectionately known as PoMoSco. Granted, it’s not over yet, but I have more poetic waters behind me so an update seems appropriate….
- I’m getting the hang of turning out a sharable first draft in a single sitting. This is good, because on April 30, I’ll do the last challenge prompt live at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, writing a poem based on a presentation about the Hubble space telescope and reading it for the audience afterward.
- I’ve learned that a larger word bank isn’t always a good thing. Constraints force creativity—a mantra I’ve read enough times that one wonders why we still insist that thinking outside the box is a good and necessary thing.
- I’d also say that prompts requiring words be kept in order of the original or the manipulated word bank are the toughest. It follows, of course, that they’re also more rewarding.
One thing I’m struggling with is a sense of identifying with the poems I’ve created. While some of my fellow PoMoSco participants are talking about making chapbooks out of their found poems, submitting them for publication, or just spending the month of May on revision, I’m not sure what I’ll do.
These poems feel somewhat distant, like they’re not really mine. Yeah, I chose the source text and picked the words, line breaks, and punctuation—but none were on topics I meant to write about exactly. And because of the way they were written (or found or excavated or whatever), they don’t sound like my voice.
It feels like a wholly separate body of work from my other poems.
If you’ve ever done found poetry, I’d love to hear whether you felt the same disconnect and whether and how you reconciled it. And if you’d like to see my body of work thus far, please, be my guest.
PS. Aren’t the badges cool?