Jaws of the Past

I have a confession to make. The Black Out Poem has captured my imagination. I find it interesting to take a page filled with writing and turn it into something often contrary to the original meaning. It’s like playing with someone else’s words and making them become my own. Free verse is the best way to work with this form of poetry. There are many pages of the book I selected left. I’m going by the old cliché “waste not, want not.” I plan to use  Rebecca Hunt’s Mr. Chartwell until it runs out of words to create Black Out verses. The poem I called Jaws of the Past.  

About the Black Out Poem and Jaws of the Past

Poet takes a black marker and redacts words until a poem is formed. It is important to note the text and redacted words form a visual poem.

Method to use

1. Identify source text. The source can be a newspaper, a book page, or written text.

2. Draw a box around keywords or phrases.

3. Make Connections between boxes. (This is optional.)

4. Color the rest in with a marker. You can use any color. The most common color used is black.

I found this style of creating a poem unique from anything I’ve ever tried before. The words are already provided, and the challenge is to make something poetic out of the text. I decided to use Mr. Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt to create these poems.

Jaws of the Past

An approaching headache
Mucksweatingly mundane
Countless times
I get stuck
The answer is
I am powerless
Thrown to the jaws of the past
You bastard
Fleeting years glide by
A relief
This particular visit
Is especially cruel
The opportunity to retire
Something to carry me through
Eventually defeat time
Short of sarcastic comebacks

Who is Molly Shea?

Molly Shea is an accomplished fictional short story writer from Indiana who writes short stories and novels about a fictional town called Tecumseh.  To read more of her short stories and adventures, click here.

Be sure to follow Molly on Twitter!

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Published by henhouselady

I am the author of Saving the Hen House. I didn't know when I started it would turn into a series. I love to ride motorcycles, the blues, my family, and going on adventures. This old hen rocks.

10 thoughts on “Jaws of the Past

  1. I didn’t think I liked black-out poetry, this piece is so beautiful and meaningful, so well put together. The grief of that one line, almost dead center, ‘You bastard’ seemed so perfect for some reason. It’s interesting how free it seems, but how silly that seems at the same time: line, form, meter, present but couldn’t have been ‘behind’ it…thank you for getting me thinking about this different art form, your poem is beautiful!

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