National Poetry Month Day 22: Your Weekly Poetry Challenge

Happy Earth Day, everyone! It is a very rainy day here–a perfect day for writing indoors. Today I’ll be hosting the Weekly Poetry Challenge. Those of you who have been following the blog for a while know that I love erasure poetry. It is a method that I first learned at the Bucknell June Seminar for Younger Poets, and one that I have used various times over the years. You choose a piece of writing to work from, a page of a novel, a series of poems, a brochure, a newspaper article, and erase particular words using a pen or white-out to create a poem out of the words that you leave.

Today I will post two different samples for you to work from, though of course you can also choose your own original to erase. One is a 1941 letter from the stack I found at an auction (see the backstory here), and the other is a page from one of the articles I read for my Feminist methodologies course, “The Evidence of Experience” by Joan Scott. Click on each for a larger version.

Use these, or pick another text of your own. Erase the words, and then share the poem with us below!

For an example see a page I made two years ago:

page of erasure poem

You can see the full poem that was originally written from that book here. And the finished poem based on that exercise here.

Happy Writing!

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2 thoughts on “National Poetry Month Day 22: Your Weekly Poetry Challenge

  1. LOVE THIS. I’m so excited to try these out. And — speaking of erasures — you should totally read The O mission Repo by Travis MacDonald. He erased the 9/11 Commission Report into probably the most badass book of poetry that I have ever read. The terrorists become “the errorists.” Poetry FTW!

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