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  #1  
Unread 03-04-2021, 02:51 AM
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Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is online now
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Default Erasure & collage poem: Home Truths

Revision 1


Source: The Artistic Crafts Series of Technical Handbooks edited by W.R. Lethaby: Writing & Illuminating, and Lettering (1913)

If the image is the wrong size for people to read please let me know.

Original version. Change made - 'Manuscript Books' in top right hand corner erased.

Last edited by Jane Crowson; 03-07-2021 at 10:25 AM.
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Unread 03-06-2021, 01:34 PM
Jason Ringler Jason Ringler is offline
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Hi Jane,

Is the poem the words in white? I like the images. Opinions over the radio with wings and the big couch, I would hang something like this up in my house. The erasure part adds nicely to the piece I think.

Art and words blended together in a fashion and there is poetry to it. Very cool.
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Unread 03-06-2021, 01:41 PM
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Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is online now
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Hi Jason,

Thank-you! Thank you so much for saying something (and something positive, which is an added bonus).

Yes, the poem is the words in white.

Do you think that I should keep the 'Manuscript Books' bit (in the top right corner of the poem, aligned with the text) or should I 'erase' that in charcoal pencil crayon, too?

Sarah-Jane
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Unread 03-06-2021, 02:54 PM
John Riley John Riley is offline
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I have a friend who has doing erasure poems for a long time and I know she has at least one book of them. I'm pretty slow-witted. Are the images included in the narrative? Is the poem called "Manuscript Books" or "Home Truths?" I think "Home Truths." These aren't problems but things I'm slow to understand. I like what is said about words but I don't see how "opinions" fits in. I doubt this is helpful but it's all I have.
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Unread 03-06-2021, 03:21 PM
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Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is online now
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John, thank-you,

This is my first attempt at an erasure poem. The visual poetry I'm used to making is more found/collage, which gives me more wiggle room. I wanted to increase constraints, see how it falls.

In terms of contemporary erasure poems, I’m influenced by Sarah J Sloat and Mary Ruefle (I have been reading about various types of whys/hows dissemination because one of things I love about Ruefle’s work is it’s one-off artefact-ness, but I work in a combination of photoshop and paper, so my things are more reproducible, less artefact). Please point me in the way of other erasure, poets, please!

The title is Home Truths. I shared an earlier version with friends and they suggested I had the cut-up ‘truths’ alongside the ‘opinions’ coming out of the radio. I liked this, as a suggestion of the ambiguities of radio-messaging and false news.

But I wasn’t sure that the poem wasn’t about that. I think it’s about the difficulties of communication - of speaking nicely. And the different types of nicely-spoken ‘truths’. So, I turned the ‘truths’ suggestion into the title rather than coming from the radio.

For me, this title brought in a kind of; ‘Missy, here’s some home truths’ effect, which is the opposite of vellum words. Two different kinds of power/agencies, one folk, one more academic. It also then echoed bits of my life experience. About gatekeepers, and the way they work.

The ‘opinions’ was my way of trying to represent a kind of middle-line radio voice acting (in this poem) as advocacy that what is spoken as ‘truths’ are not always real truths (it’s why the radio has wings/angel). The couch is meant to represent the space of vellum words - a kind of cosy space of gatekeeping/ minimum communication (home truths and academic truths).

I think that I probably ought to blend out ‘manuscript books’, as it’s potentially confusing, as your thoughts show. I was a bit wedded to it as the original book (which is a kind of 'way to behave' in lettering) has these, & I half-love them. And your thoughts are very, very helpful (thank-you loads, seriously thank-you loads).

Sarah-Jane

Last edited by Jane Crowson; 03-06-2021 at 03:23 PM.
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Unread 03-06-2021, 04:06 PM
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jane Crowson View Post
Please point me in the way of other erasure, poets, please!
I've enjoyed Austin Kleon's newspaper blackout poems. Probably his most famous is "Overheard on the Titanic." But he has loads of others worth browsing through.

I particularly like the way he does interesting things with the blacking sometimes, such as using prison-like tally marks in the seventh in this series (which references the passage of time).

Snort:
https://austinkleon.com/2018/05/05/the-future-we-want/

Here's a short video of his process.

Quote:
I think that I probably ought to blend out ‘manuscript books’, as it’s potentially confusing, as your thoughts show.
I would second this motion, Sarah-Jane.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 03-07-2021 at 01:44 AM.
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Unread 03-06-2021, 06:35 PM
Jason Ringler Jason Ringler is offline
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Yes, I think blending out manuscript books will work. At first I liked it there but it is kind of off to side and separate.
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Unread 03-07-2021, 10:25 AM
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Thank-you Julie and Jason,

Revision posted, with 'Manuscript Books' erased (using photoshop rather than erasure techniques,).

The reflection point for myself for any further erasure poetry is that I must consider how (if I find something like this, that doesn't quite 'fit') I erase it. Photoshop feels like a bit of a cheat, somehow. But technically it seemed like the most sensible choice.

Julie, thank-you very much for that link. I love the humour in his work, and the clever way he lets tiny bits of text show through at the edges. I agree that the tally marks are very clever and effective.

thanks again,

Sarah-Jane
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Unread 03-07-2021, 07:52 PM
Jason Ringler Jason Ringler is offline
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I wondered if there were 107 tally marks.
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Unread 03-08-2021, 04:56 AM
David Callin David Callin is offline
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This is a fun thing, Sarah-Jane (I like the double barrel. Reminds me of Violet Elizabeth in the Just Wiliam books. That's where the resemblance ends, I'm sure.)

I have never seen one of these before. Not so much a found poem as an uncovered one. Very Michelangelesque.

Cheers

David
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