Introduction to Found Poetry

1960s: Days of Rage

A piece of blackout poetry, created by blocking out words from a found piece of newsprintW – Found poetry, W – Erasure (artform)

“Poetry is everywhere, and it hides in plain view. Everyday writing like catalogs and tax forms can contain the ingredients for a ‘found poem.’ Writers of found poetry pull words and phrases from various sources, including news articles, shopping lists, graffiti, historic documents, and even other works of literature. The original language is reformatted to create the found poem. … Instead, the poet engages with the text and offers a new context, a contrary view, a fresh insight, or lyrical and evocative writing. Just as plastic bottles can be recycled to make a chair, the source text is transformed into something completely different. Traditionally, a found poem uses only words from the original source. However, poets have developed many ways to work with found…

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