Friday, February 14, 2020

Poetry Friday: Blackout Poetry

I haven't written about our Friday writing group for such a long time. Ramona and I, and two of her friends are still meeting every week; I guess I just haven't been writing about writing. (Let's face it, "writing" here at the blog has suffered immeasurably in the last couple of years. I'd love to remedy that and occasionally share something other than a Poetry Friday post, though I'm grateful for the way Poetry Friday keeps me hanging in there, blog-wise.)


A couple of weeks ago, I gave the girls a Blackout Poetry assignment. What is Blackout Poetry? Here are loads of great examples from Austin Kleon. He used newspaper articles, but you can use any text.

For our project, I pulled an idea from this Pinterest page (thank you, Racheal.) We used this passage:

(and here's what someone else did with it) from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Of course, it's always a good idea to credit the source of your blackout poem. Copyright, copyright, copyright, people!

We drew an idea from our aptly named Idea Jar:

Our inspiration: Springtime. (And oh, am I feeling inspired about spring after the frigid temps of the last couple of days!)

Here's what I came up with for my "illustrated" blackout poem:

Here's the text I highlighted/kept: 

Feel it. 
Something soft, 
branches of trees. 
A light ahead, 
but a long way off. 
A moment. 
A wood at night, 
the air. 
Dark tree-trunks, 
open doorway. 
Walk forward
through the wood, 
towards the other light. 
A pitter-patter, 
among the trees
soon after. 

~ Karen Edmisten 

If I get permission from the girls, I'll share their creations here, too. (It's just not as simple as it was when they were eight years old and every smashingly cute word out of their mouths was blog fodder. Sigh.) 


For more about Poetry Friday, go here


Tabatha said...

So charmed by your project/poem! That's a great page to use for a blackout poem, and "springtime" is a serendipitous theme. (When I read the second sentence of your post, I read "friendsmen" for "friends" -- because of the extra m-- and I liked it. Sounds like a gang, only more likely to do quests.)

Karen Edmisten said...

Tabatha, what a tactful and charming way to point out my typo! Thank you! :D I'm changing it now, although I love your take on it! :) :)

Karen Edmisten said...

And I agree that "springtime" was such a serendipitous theme!

jama said...

What a fun project. Love what you came up with -- hooray for springtime (our daffodils are coming up!).

Karen Edmisten said...

And hooray for daffodils! :)

Linda B said...

I love that you not only found a lovely poem, but created ALL of it with a painting, too, Karen. And I love that "pitter-patter". We've had snow on & off for over a week now, but today, our Valentine gift is 50 degrees-heaven! Happy Valentine's Day! May you have more writing in your future!

Tim Kulp said...

Thank you for sharing Karen! I've seen/heard about this a few times but your share here has prompted me to give it a try. Thanks!

Karen Eastlund said...

Okay, I have to try this... haven't tried it... will try it. Must try it. Thanks for sharing this... it will be on my list. So many ideas... so little time. Thanks again. Happy V Day!

Karen Edmisten said...

Linda, 50 degrees is indeed heavenly! We won't be quite that heavenly here today, but I'll take the 45 predicted degrees. :) Here's to more writing in everyone's future!

Karen Edmisten said...

Hope you have fun with it, Tim!

Karen Edmisten said...

Karen, there's no turning back now. You're publicly committed to trying it! :)

Ramona said...

Such fun to read your poem and see my OLW (light) scattered throughout! I'm trying to share light-filled poetry at least once a month. Your illustration is lovely, the perfect accompaniment to your poem. I love how you tucked some words into the branches.

Leigh Anne Eck said...

I love playing with blackout poetry, but I have not been very successful with the artistry of it. I am much better with a single black marker. I am not even sure if I am hearing the pitter patter yet, but oh how I am ready!

Mary Lee said...

I love the idea of ILLUSTRATED blackouts...and choosing a theme to guide your word choice. I'm inspired! (First, I need an idea jar...)

Ruth said...

So great, and I love the idea of having everyone use the same page. I think I'll try that with my seventh graders.

Karen Edmisten said...

Thank you, Ramona! It was fun to illustrate it. In the past, the girls and I have simply blacked out the rest of the page, so this was a fun change.

Karen Edmisten said...

This was the first time I've strayed from the single black marker, Leigh Anne! :)
I'm so ready for that pitter patter, too!

Karen Edmisten said...

Get that jar going, Mary Lee! :D

Karen Edmisten said...

Enjoy, Ruth! Can't wait to see your results, if you're able to share them.

Carol Varsalona said...

You gave me a new idea with an illustrated blackout poem with a theme, Karen. I will offer this option to teachers during professional development.

Karen Edmisten said...

Wonderful, Carol! Enjoy!

author amok said...

I'm coming to this post late, Karen. It's difficult to enjoy early spring with all that's going on in the world, but your poem made me hopeful. I love how you created art on the page to reveal the blackout poem!

Karen Edmisten said...

And I'm late replying but I'm glad to hear this made you feel hopeful. Things are getting more challenging every day, but we can keep striving to create beauty and feel that hope!