Concordance Poems
April 30, 2013 9:16 AM   Subscribe

Concordance Poems
Recently, I've been using concordances of poems in my teaching and presenting, and have been surprised at the new poems that emerge from the rearranged works. I started a single-topic tumblr to document some of my favorites.

I often make the case that concordances/indexes/tables of contents serve as pre-digital, print-based versions of "distant reading," and as a poet and librarian, I am always looking for new ways to enter texts. It's been really interesting to read the lists of lines and word frequencies as standalone poems, and I feel like I'm learning a lot about these writers by treating their creative output this way.

I have a little over 20 listed already (mostly from the books I have on hand), but hope to add 5 or 6 each week. Eventually I'll solicit submissions as well.
Role: I started this tumblr.
posted by activitystory (4 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

Pretty cool. Makes me want to write a fake concordance poem - basically adopt the concordance as a form.
posted by eustacescrubb at 9:23 AM on April 30, 2013

wow! love this
posted by raisindebt at 6:37 PM on April 30, 2013

Thanks, y'all. It's been a fun project. & eustacescrubb, seems like 2 forms have emerged so far: the poems which feature a particular shared word in every line, and the ones with single-word lines arranged alphabetically. Fun experiments for sure!
posted by activitystory at 7:16 AM on May 2, 2013

aaaah I love these. I'm a sucker for repetition anyway.
posted by threeants at 1:33 AM on May 3, 2013

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