Golden Shovel Poetry is a style of verse created by Terrance Hayes. This form of found poetry allows the writer to take a favorite poem and use it to make something original. I experimented with found poetry last year when I wrote Blank Verse poems. Since I have a small booklet of William Blake poems on my shelf that I’ve planned to reread, I decided to start the month of July playing with the words written by this Romantic Era poet. Blake didn’t receive much recognition in his life. Some people thought he was insane. I will call this first poem Fire in Their Blood.
The rules for writing a Golden Shovel Poem and Fire in Their Blood
While researching this style of poetry created by Terrance Hayes, there seem to be four simple rules. You can use as many lines of the poem as you want, and the poem will end with you being your creation. I find this idea interesting. Written below are the three simple rules.
1). Choose a poem that you like. I will use poems by William Blake in my July poetic adventure.
2)Use each word in the line or lines as the end word in your poem. Make sure they stay in order.
3) Construct an entire poem around them. The meaning doesn’t have to be the same.
4) Give the original poet credit who wrote the line or lines you used.
In this poetic adventure, I will stick to using poems written by William Blake. This small poem I call Fire in Their Blood will consist of the end of lines taken from Blake’s Auguries of Innocence.
Fire in Their Blood Your refined, educated words made me a Promise, but you treated us like a rabid dog Tied to a post and kicked and starv’d Something to throw stones at Because we wouldn’t obey his Commands as his master’s Footsteps moved through the gate. A crystal ball always predicts The ways of the future and the Prosperity, happiness, and ruin With the persistence of The one who knows the ways of the Fortune of this blasted State I know the way of a Man who sits on the Horse And how he abus’d and misus’d The ones he met upon And pushed around on the Long and winding, rickety road I can hear every one of their calls And the pleas that were made to The one who looks down from Heaven Searching far and wide for A merciful Human With fire of righteousness in their blood
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.
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