Newspaper Poem

[A poem made up of phrases from a newspaper article.

For the original article, go here.]

 

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Vaguely Decasyllabic Newspaper Poem


Ancient Herculaneum was chic.

Well-furnished rooms, with views out to the sea.

Mosaic scrolls, monastic libraries.

 

 

Unlock the scrolls of Herculaneum!

But the scrolls tend to go to pieces.

The ink is dull black and iridesces.

 

 

Some pieces, the eye can make out nothing.

Black lines on a pale grey background,

Black dust of the scroll powdering.

 

 

Not all the villa’s scrolls have been unrolled;

The scrolls are tightly wound and creased.

Still…  orphan fragments make a text:

 

 

hold power… think… with a moderate force

 

 

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Fiber; sand; the structure of papyrus…

What further scrolls remain there still?

Early editions of Aeneas…

 

 

 

Newspaper Poem

UD hasn’t done one of these in awhile. This one’s largely taken from the language in this BBC article.

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EVERY FIFTH STAR HAS A PLANET LIKE EARTH

Every fifth star has a planet like earth,
One in five suns a habitable world.

I combed through stars — 42,000-worth –
And planets missed by software then unfurled

(Software made to sift through planet signatures).

Not places where the dayside’s molten
But with persistences of water –

Interplanetary Waldens.

Newspaper Poem.

UD, long-term readers know, likes to write these. You can only use phrases from a newspaper article. Slight alterations are permitted.

Click on this post’s category – newspaper poem – to read earlier UD efforts.

Here’s one for today, from this article.

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Canterbury Tale

Over the swell rose a raft of pumice.
Floating rocks drifted to the sea surface.

Solidified lava-drifts filled with air
Spread over thousands of water miles square.

Lighter than water, the rocks quickly rise
To cover an area Belgium-size.

Poetry from Prose

UD takes sections of Judith Thurman’s marvelous 2008 New Yorker essay about paleolithic art caves, changes a word here and there, and makes a poem.

(There’s a new 3D Werner Herzog film about one of the caves.)

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LETTER FROM SOUTHERN FRANCE

As the painters were learning
to crush hematite, and to sharpen
embers of Scotch pine for their charcoal
(red and black the primary colors),
the last Neanderthals were still living
on the vast steppe that was Europe.

The scratches made by a standing bear
have been overlaid with a palimpsest
of signs or drawings, and one has to wonder
if cave art didn’t begin with a recognition
that bear claws were an expressive tool
for engraving a record — poignant and indelible —
of a stressed creature’s passage through the dark.

“As we trailed the artists deeper and deeper,
noting where they’d broken off stalagmites
to mark their path, we found signs that seemed to say,
‘We’re sanctifying a finite space in an infinite universe.’ ”

Halfway home to the mortal world,
we paused and turned off our torches.
It takes the brain a few minutes to accept
the totality of the darkness — your sight
keeps grasping for a hold.
Whatever the art means, you understand,
at that moment, that its vessel is both a womb and a sepulchre.

UD Writes a Newspaper Poem

Devoted readers know I like to write these. Here are a few. I take a newspaper article and make a poem out of it.

Here’s the article
from which I’ve made my latest newspaper poem.

Here’s the poem:

A Lunar Crash Won’t Hurt the Moon

A lunar crash won’t hurt the moon.
Think of an eyelash, drifting to the floor of a 747.
This is a million times gentler than that.

The sun will light the impact plume
As it lifts six miles to heaven,
Deepening Cabeus Crater’s vat

Of shadowed ice, and making a boon
For lunar bases. A little leaven,
Moon dirt, a shepherd craft…

And the rock resumes
Its even, meteoritic,
Temper.

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